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Decline in endowments may affect best colleges rankings

The value of college endowments, which had rebounded following the recession, declined slightly despite a recovering stock market, U.S. News reports. This finding comes from the newly released 2012 NACUBO-Commonfund Study of Endowments, produced by the National Association of College and University Business Officers. It turns out that 2012 was a sub-par year for the performance of college endowments. According to the study, the endowments of the 831 institutions surveyed had an average decline of 0.3 percent in the year ending June 30, 2012. This is down sharply from the previous year’s average gain of 19.2 percent and well below 2010’s gain of 11.9 percent, but better than the 18.7 percent decline for endowments that occurred during the recession in 2009. In terms of the methodology used to calculate the U.S. News Best Colleges rankings, the absolute size and annual performance of a college’s endowment are not direct factors in the rankings…

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