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Private Equity Performance: Returns, Persistence, and Capital Flows

Steven Kaplan () and Antoinette Schoar ()

Journal of Finance, 2005, vol. 60, issue 4, 1791-1823

Abstract: This paper investigates the performance and capital inflows of private equity partnerships. Average fund returns (net of fees) approximately equal the S&P 500 although substantial heterogeneity across funds exists. Returns persist strongly across subsequent funds of a partnership. Better performing partnerships are more likely to raise follow-on funds and larger funds. This relationship is concave, so top performing partnerships grow proportionally less than average performers. At the industry level, market entry and fund performance are procyclical; however, established funds are less sensitive to cycles than new entrants. Several of these results differ markedly from those for mutual funds. Copyright 2005 by The American Finance Association.

Date: 2005
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