Making perfor­mance transparent

Charities bear particular responsibility when it comes to investing their wealth. The new performance index from StiftungSchweiz, created in collaboration with Zürcher Kantonalbank (ZKB), helps charities grade their own investment returns better.

For 2019, the average perfor­mance of the ‘Swiss Phil­an­thropy Perfor­mance Index’ (SwiPhiX) lay at 13.8 percent. The perfor­mance shows how the value of the assets, combi­ned with divi­dends and other income, has deve­lo­ped. The 13.8 percent repres­ents the average of manda­tes issued by chari­ta­ble orga­ni­sa­ti­ons and mana­ged by Swis­scanto Invest by Zürcher Kanto­nal­bank. At the end of 2019, this amoun­ted to 56 diffe­rent manda­tes with a total volume of 1.8 billion Swiss francs. 

Impres­sive performance

Chari­ties can choose from a broad range of stra­te­gies for mana­ging their wealth, and the perfor­mance that is gene­ra­ted can vary just as widely. The perfor­mance index illus­tra­tes how results are distri­bu­ted, with the aim of depic­ting this in a trans­pa­rent manner. In 2019, the mini­mum perfor­mance was 8.1 percent, and the maxi­mum 28.0 percent. Perfor­mance over the last five years is also impres­sive: the maxi­mum perfor­mance over this period was 26.7 percent, while the mini­mum perfor­mance was 12.4 percent and the mean 22.6 percent.

It’s not just about shares

In an envi­ron­ment shaped by nega­tive inte­rest rates, shares are begin­ning to take centre stage. When grading results, the key lies in how chari­ties’ wealth is inves­ted. The perfor­mance index also offers trans­pa­rency here. Tradi­tio­nally, chari­ta­ble orga­ni­sa­ti­ons inves­ted heavily in bonds, and in conjunc­tion with liqui­dity, or credit balan­ces, these rela­tively secure assets still make up half of their invest­ments. The propor­tion of shares is curr­ently around 40 percent. The rema­in­der is divi­ded between indi­rect real estate invest­ments and alter­na­tive invest­ments such as commo­di­ties and hedge funds. 

The ‘Swiss Phil­an­thropy Perfor­mance Index’ will be calcu­la­ted monthly, and published at, where further details and infor­ma­tion can also be found. 

StiftungSchweiz is committed to enabling a modern philanthropy that unites and excites people and has maximum impact with minimal time and effort.

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