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Harvard University AP/Steven Senne

Harvard University's endowment is expected to lay off half of its staff and outsource management of most of its $35.7 billion assets, The Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday.

About half of the 230 employees at Harvard Management Co. will leave over the course of the year, with its internal hedge funds shutting down and traders leaving by the middle of the year, according to the Journal, which cited unnamed people familiar with the matter.

Harvard's endowment fund is the largest in the world. Yale University ranks next at $25.5 billion, then Princeton at $22.3 billion.

But itsportfolio has been performing poorly since the 2008 economic crisis. Its one-year investment return for fiscal year 2016 was -2.2%.

Harvard's natural resources portfolio and its passively managed exchange-traded funds will remain in house, according to the Journal.

Read the full report at the Wall Street Journal »