Businessweek reports that Harvard bet the farm in Brazil — and lost. The managers of the nation’s largest university endowment made a substantial investment in a sprawling agricultural development in Northeastern Brazil. According to one analyst, Harvard’s top money managers — who were paid $242 million from 2010 through 2014 — thought they could handle risks almost all other endowments avoided. The result is a recent decision by current endowment chief N.P. “Narv” Narvekar to write down the value of Harvard’s globe-spanning natural resources portfolio last year by $1.1 billion, to $2.9 billion.
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