Emory’s endowment grew from $7.87 billion in the 2019 fiscal year to $7.94 billion in the 2020 fiscal year, a 0.82% increase, according to a yearly study by the National Association of College and University Business Officers (NACUBO). 

Between fiscal years 2018 and 2019, Emory’s endowment grew by nearly 8%, from $7.29 billion to $7.87 billion. Emory ranks No. 17 among the 717 institutions in the U.S. and Canada surveyed in the study.

NACUBO, in collaboration with the Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association of America, published the annual report on Feb. 19.

Emory’s endowment remains the largest of any participating university in Georgia, with the Georgia Institute of Technology ranking No. 2 in the state and No. 51 nationally at $2.17 billion and the University of Georgia ranking No. 83 nationally with $1.36 billion.

Senior Director of Research and Policy Analysis at NACUBO Ken Redd told the Wheel that many participating institutions reported negative changes to their endowments and slower growth compared to previous years, though he could not speak to the cause since it was not surveyed.

NACUBO President and CEO Susan Johnston said in a press release that the study captures the first few months of the challenges created by the COVID-19 pandemic and that next year’s report will “help complete the picture of how institutions and their endowments coped.”

Returns from endowments this past year were lower than the returns from last year, “which tends to translate to lower increases in endowment values,” Redd explained. 

Redd added there was a large drop in new gifts to endowments with a 16% decrease nationally. Emory has raised an average of $376 million annually over the last three years and $45 million toward COVID-19 initiatives in the last year to prepare for the next phase of its current capital campaign.

Institutions spent more from their endowments this fiscal year, the study found, with spending increasing by 4%-6% across participating schools.