In the future, if someone tells you that they're a "hedge fund manager at Harvard" you should feel free to tell them that such a job is too contemptibly douchey to be real.
Harvard University’s endowment plans to outsource management of most of its assets and lay off roughly half the staff, in a radical overhaul of the way the world’s wealthiest school invests its money.
About half the 230 employees at Harvard Management Co. will leave as part of a sweeping change by the university’s new endowment chief, N.P. “Narv” Narvekar. The endowment will shut down its internal hedge funds and let go traders by the middle of the year, with other layoffs occurring by year-end, Mr. Narvekar said in a Wednesday letter to Harvard endowment employees, certain alumni and university administrators.
And Harvard made the decision because it turns out that Harvardian money managers (who perhaps can't get jobs at the more famous hedge funds) haven't been very good at managing Harvardian money.
Harvard’s returns have trailed rivals’ in recent years. The endowment’s annualized gains of 5.7% over the 10 years ended June 30, 2016 are second- lowest in the Ivy League and below the comparable 8.1% returns of Yale University and Columbia University.
The $35.7 billion endowment currently provides more than a third of Harvard’s operating budget and contributes to the costs of student financial aid, research and professor salaries.
So what's the new boss gonna do instead?
Richard Slocum, who most recently invested the personal wealth of New York Jets owner Woody Johnson, will in March become the endowment’s chief investment officer, according to people familiar with the matter. The position is a new role for Harvard and reports to Mr. Narvekar. Messrs. Narvekar and Slocum previously worked together at J.P. Morgan Chase & Co.
Why let B-list hedge fund guys lose your money when you can hire JPM alums to do it for less and outside funds to do it for more? Balance.