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February 12, 2016

Endowment Chiefs Bearish as Global Growth Slows, Survey Says

Endowment and foundation managers say slow economic growth around the world is the biggest near-term threat to investment returns, Bloomberg reports, citing a new survey by consulting firm NEPC. Slowing growth overshadowed concerns such as rising interest rates and overseas conflicts among the 54 foundations, universities, and other nonprofit investors polled last month, most with assets of $50 million to $1 billion.

Eighty-four percent of respondents expect the Standard & Poor's 500 to either lose ground or gain no more than 5 percent this year, but the survey found little consensus on where to invest and little appetite for overhauling asset allocations. "The No. 1 concern is global economic growth," Cathy Konicki, head of Boston-based NEPC's endowment and foundation practice, but she added, "there are different ideas about what to do."