Yeshiva University in New York fessed up years ago to having lost more than $100 million in
But it was hard to blame the leadership of the prestigious Jewish institution for that misstep, given how many other prominent wealthy investors lost money in the scam.
But as Steven I. Weiss of the Jewish Channel documents in an astounding investigative piece produced and published by takepart.com, the full story is much, much worse. Yeshiva has lost hundreds of millions through investments in risky hedge-fund investments, all approved by board members with a taste for risk.
Formerly one of the most comfortably endowed institutions of higher learning in the country, Yeshiva's credit rating was downgraded to junk earlier this year by
Weiss reported that the university's financial reversal comes to more than $1 billion since new leadership took over in 2002 -- a $500-million loss on risky investments -- and more than $500 million in debt.
Some of the risky investment practices were introduced by Yeshiva's pre-2002 leadership under the scholarly and conservative
"Once the old leadership was fully locked out of the room, the younger generation playing with Yeshiva's money started really gambling big," Weiss said.
The whole sorry mess resembles that of California's