*Net of external manager fees
Endowment funds are the asset base that provides current and future revenues for the University of Wisconsin. The Wisconsin Foundation and Alumni Association staff and the investment committee of WFAA’s board of directors manage the endowment fund on a total-return basis. This allows the endowment to be invested with a long-term perspective and an emphasis on diversified, equity-related strategies.
The investment, spending, and expense-fee policies associated with our endowment are designed with the goal of enabling endowment balances to increase at the rate of inflation over the long term, after all fees and spending distributions. WFAA currently allocates the annual income based on a spending-plan rate of 4.5 percent, multiplied by the average market value of the total endowment fund for the most recent 16 quarters. This rate is reviewed annually by the board of directors.
The table on this page shows the total-return figures, and the circular chart shows the asset allocation of WFAA’s endowment fund. The endowment fund asset allocation targets have been established to promote overall portfolio diversification while providing a return necessary to meet the investment objectives.
Asset Allocation as of June 30, 2017
Total Endowment Fund Assets: $2,746,470,216
Endowment Fund Assets 2013–17
The endowment fund has grown from $2 billion in value on June 30, 2013, to more than $2.7 billion as of June 30, 2017, as reflected in this graph.