Oxford University’s endowment fund suffered a 1.6 per cent loss last year, which would have been greater but for its increased investments in private equity funds.
The fund, which is run by Sandra Robertson, has ramped up its exposure to private equity from eight per cent to 13 per cent of total fund assets. The private equity portfolio increased in value by 10.7 per cent last year, although that wasn’t enough to offset losses from its equity and commodity investments.
In spite of the losses, the total assets run by Oxford University Endowment Management increased last year by nine per cent to £1.42bn (€1.8bn), owing to donations.
Cambridge has the largest university endowment in the UK, with £1.53bn, but that still falls some way short of the capital managed by Ivy League universities such as Yale ($19.4bn) and Harvard ($32bn).