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New Mexico State University

New Mexico State University

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NMSU Foundation portfolio performance compares to Ivy League

When compared with Ivy League schools, the New Mexico State University Foundation's portfolio performance was second only to Harvard in investment returns during the 2003-04 fiscal year, said Rebecca Dukes, vice president for university advancement.

annual returns for the last fiscal year were 19.9 percent. Harvard's returns were 21.1 percent followed by Yale at 19.4 percent.

"This is not an easy thing to do with an endowment our size," said Bill Harty, assistant vice president for advancement administration. "Endowments at the Ivy League schools are so big they are able to make more volatile investments which can lead to higher returns."

Harvard's endowment is more than $22 billion and Yale's is more than $12 billion. NMSU's endowment doubled its size in the past six years to be at $77.1 million at the end of June 2004 and reached $87.5 million by Dec. 31.

"The Foundation is fortunate to have dedicated and talented investment committee members and professional advisers who, building on the great strategies of past members, are continually striving to obtain the best possible return with the best possible strategy for the long run," Dukes said.

Harty said the successful investment trend carried into the first six months of the 2004-05 fiscal year with a 10. 2 percent return reported at the end of December. He attributes much of the success for the improved portfolio performance to the dedication of the foundation's investment committee and the growth of the endowment, which has allowed for more diversified investment practices.

"Significant contributions from alumni and friends of the university, and the hard work of the committee and its professional advisers have created the ability to have a more diversified portfolio," said Mickey Clute, president of GenCon Corp., who has headed the investment committee since 2001. "Proper diversification takes risk out of the portfolio. The growth of the endowment has allowed for much more diversification."

"The committee will continue to look for ways to invest that decrease risk and increase returns," Harty said. "This is the best way to ensure a consistent source of funding for the more than 900 funds in the endowment."