Impoverished Nobel Foundation Can Learn From Prize Winners

The Nobel Foundation, which pays for the prizes and banquets every year, invests too much in alternatives.

For more than 100 years, the Nobel Foundation has paid for the annual prizes in the sciences, literature and peace just by investing the original capital provided by Alfred Nobel, the inventor of dynamite. According to anarticle by my colleagues at Bloomberg News, however, the foundation is now considering accepting outside donations after years of poor returns on its endowment. It has already reduced this year's prize payouts by 20 percent. The foundation might not have reached this point if it had listened to the many finance academics it has given prizes to over the years.

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