As of 2020, Yale University as a U.S. institution of higher education had the second highest financial endowment, a sum of money that was invested in stocks, yielding returns that funded a portion of the university's operational expenses, helping to ensure the university's survival in perpetuity.

According to The National Association of College and University Business Officers (NACUBO), Yale's Endowment Fund was $31.20 billion US dollars. The amount placed it under Harvard University in the state of Massachusetts which had an Endowment Fund of $40.58 billion. It was ahead of California's Stanford University which had a fund of $28.90 billion.

In October 2021, Yale’s endowment reported a 40.2% investment return, net of fees, for the year ending June 30, 2021, earning $12.1 billion in investment gains. The endowment value increased from $31.2 billion on June 30, 2020 to $42.3 billion on June 30, 2021. Endowment distributions to Yale’s operating budget during the period amounted to $1.5 billion, covering 35% of the university’s budget.

“It was an extraordinary year for the endowment, which will benefit the Yale community now and for generations to come,” said Matt Mendelsohn, Yale’s chief investment officer. “While we are pleased with this gain, we define success over longer periods of time, measured by our ability to provide stable and growing support to the university so that it can carry out its mission.”

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