An illustrated guide to the annual financial report
The resources held by CU are called assets. Before we look at specific assets, let's take a quick look at CU's total assets over the last five years. These represent the sum of what the University owns - some of these assets (such as buildings) are recorded at historical cost - and others (such as investments) are recorded at fair value. Increases in total assets over time are generally indicative of a growing institution.
CU's investments include money market funds, municipal and corporate bonds, asset-backed securities, mutual funds, collective investment trust funds, repurchase agreements, corporate equities, and alternative non-equity securities.
These are primarily due from students; federal, state, and private sponsors; and patients. Not all payments will necessarily be collected. CU estimates the dollar amount that will not be collected and records an allowance for bad debt to offset the gross amount of the receivables.
CU also owns capital assets - buildings, equipment, land, etc. Capital assets cannot be spent so they do not provide the cash necessary to fund operations. In fact, as buildings age, the cost to maintain them increases, resulting in additional expense to CU.
Net position is what's left over after you subtract CU's liabilities from its assets. The increase in CU's net pension liability for FY 2017 is a result of the increase in the statewide net pension liability, due to changes in underlying actuarial assumptions made by PERA. We see this change reflected in the top chart "Net Position," which shows CU's new negative unrestricted net position. The second chart shows CU's unrestricted net position absent the state's PERA liability. Important to note: CU's cash payments to PERA have not been impacted by these actuarial changes.
CU's capital asset balance less debt issued to fund those capital assets - this is typically over 50% of CU's total net position but doesn't reflect spendable reserves.
Endowments received as gifts: only the investment earnings on the gift can be spent and then only on scholarships, endowed chairs, and the like.
Entire gift can be spent, not just the investment earnings. Funds can be spent only in accordance with restrictions established by external third parties.
Balances designated for use by leadership to address University needs.