Stealing Harvard


Harvard's endowment lost $350 million in the Sowood blow-up. The amount is a small dent in Harvard's well-endowed $29 billion coffers (why did we need to pay $40k/year to go there again?) but comes from one of Harvard's own.
Sowood was founded by Jeffrey Larson, former manager of Harvard's foreign investments. Larson helped Harvard become the well-hung giant it is today, and Harvard returned the favor by investing with Sowood. The 'Vard netted three years of gains before taking a $350 million bath.
Some argue that making crappy investment choices like Sowood underscores the fact that Harvard fund managers are overpaid. Larson, for instance, raked in $17 million in 2003, when the endowment returned just over 10%.
Why Harvard Is Smarting [Wall Street Journal]