Uchicago file photog

The University of Chicago’s endowment stands at $8.6 billion, and the school’s total assets stand at $17.2 billion, up from $16.7 billion last year, according to its financial statement for fiscal year 2019 through the end of June 2020, released on Nov. 6.

The endowment grew $100 million from last year. A university release said the endowment saw a 3.2% return on investments as of June 30, with investment returns adding more than $6 billion in market value to the endowment since the Great Recession, driven by 8.9% average annual returns. Twenty-five years ago, the endowment was $1.1 billion.

Net assets totaled $9.2 billion, down nearly $500 million the year before. Of the assets, $2.5 billion were unrestricted, and $6.7 billion came with restrictions from the donors.

Liabilities grew by a billion dollars from 2019, to more than $8 billion.

Though the U. of C. heavily subsidizes many students' tuitions through merit and financial assistance — it spent more than $152 million at the undergraduate level and more than $358 million at the graduate level this year — undergraduate tuition currently has a sticker price of $60,552. Total revenue from tuition and fees, net of student aid, stands at $524 million, up more than $11 million from last year.

The school's total operating revenue is nearly $4.97 billion, with almost $398 million coming from government grants and contracts, nearly $242 million coming from private funders, $474 million from the endowment, $2.35 billion from patient services, $139 million from auxiliaries, $697 million from other sources of income and nearly $150 million from net assets released from restrictions.

The school saw operating revenue decline in private gifts, patient services, auxiliaries and, marginally, in the endowment payout and net assets released from restrictions.

Compensation in academic salaries increased $37 million to $686 million, staff salaries more than $118 million to $1.59 billion, and benefits more than $27 million to $533 million. Other operating expenses stood at $2.35 billion, up $84.7 million, with about $70 million more being spent on supplies and services. In sum, operating expenses grew $267.7 million to $5.16 billion; the university reported an operating deficit of more than $185 million.

Asked for comment, spokesman Gerald McSwiggan released a statement: “Our financial statements for 2020 reflect both the strategic investments the university has made in academic programs, student financial aid and our facilities in recent years, and the unique financial implications associated with the pandemic.

“While the impact of COVID remains significant on the university community, and a great deal of uncertainty lies ahead, we are confident that the university will come through this situation in a strong position to continue building upon the progress of recent years.”

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