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University of Michigan endowment balloons to nearly $10 billion

University of Michigan's Burton Bell Tower
User Matthew Britt
University of Michigan's Burton Bell Tower

According to a University of Michigan press release, the university's "total net position" has increased by $1.6 billion to $13.1 billion, and its endowment has grown by $1.3 billion to $9.7 billion in the past budget year. 
The endowment figures were presented in an annual investment report to the Board of Regents on Thursday in Flint. The report showed an 18.8% investment return for the endowment in fiscal year 2014, up from 10.7 percent last year.

In University of Michigan's 2014 Annual Report, Douglas Strong, U-M's interim executive vice president and chief financial officer, explained that:

"This increase [in net position and endowments] is primarily the result of strong investment returns – which added $974 million to the endowment, net of distributions for operations – and a strong start to the public phase of the Victors for Michigan campaign ... which included $298 million in gift revenue for capital and endowment purposes."

In the same report, U of M president Mark Schlissel asserted that student support is the school's "highest priority":

"One of our most important goals will be to keep a Michigan education affordable and build the financial resources that will enable us to do that.

According to the NACUBO-Commonfund Study of Endowments, University of Michigan's endowment ranked eighth largest among all U.S. universities in 2013, as seen below:

Top 10 US universities with the highest endowments.
Credit NACUBO-Commonfund Study of Endowments
Top 10 US universities with the highest endowments.

– By Ari Sandberg