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Fund Times: Fidelity Adds Performance Fees to Several Funds

Plus, lots of subadvisor and manager changes, and more.

Morningstar Analysts, 02/26/2007

Fidelity plans to add performance fees to 19 Fidelity Advisor offerings pending shareholder approval. The fees will go into effect on a broad range of funds and will match those already applied to others in the Advisor family. Fidelity will add or subtract as many as 20 basis points, or hundredths of a percent, to or from the funds' fees based on 36-month performance versus their benchmarks. Among the bigger funds affected are Fidelity Advisor Dividend Growth FADAX, Fidelity Advisor Equity Growth EPGAX, and Fidelity Advisor Diversified International FDVAX.

Wellington Manager Plans to Retire
James Averill will retire in June from Wellington Management Co. Although he'll stay as senior vice president until that time, he plans to step down in April from the management teams of both Hartford Value Opportunities HVOAX and Hartford Capital Appreciation II HCTAX. Averill also recently worked on teams managing two subadvised funds, Vanguard Windsor VWNDX and Vanguard Capital Value VCVLX. The rest of these funds' experienced teams remain in place.

Lord Abbett Fund Loses Manager
Stephen McBoyle is leaving Lord Abbett Value Opportunities LVOAX to work in private equity. McBoyle managed the fund since its December 2005 inception and delivered a great 29% return for calendar-year 2006. Lord Abbett value team's Bob Fetch replaces McBoyle. Fetch will continue to manage Lord Abbett Small-Cap Value LRSCX, a small-blend fund whose 10-year return tops 93% of its peers, and Lord Abbett All Value LDFVX.

Old Mutual Replaces Subadvisor on Three Funds
CastleArk Management is out after just 13 months as subadvisor to Old Mutual Large Cap Growth OALHX, Old Mutual Large Cap Growth Concentrated OLGBX, and Old Mutual Select Growth OAHEX. The move comes as the advisor struggles to improve returns at these offerings: Each fund's three-year record trails its category average. Ashfield Capital Partners replaces CastleArk. It's Ashfield's first charge as a public mutual fund manager. Turner Investment Partners remains as the other subadvisor to each fund.

Troubled Putnam Fund Gets New Managers
R.J. Bukovac is no longer manager of Putnam Classic Equity PXGIX. Josh Brooks and Eric Harthun take over this fund whose string of below-average returns (in each calendar year) versus large-value rivals dates to 1999. Brooks, Putnam's CIO for large-cap strategies, and Harthun also manage Putnam Fund for Growth & Income PGRWX, an offering with a similarly troubled past. Quantitative expert Michael Abata, who has delivered more-encouraging returns a Putnam New Value PANVX, remains aboard as comanager here.

SunAmerica Replaces Subadvisor on Small-Cap Fund
SunAmerica Focused Small-Cap Value SSSAX replaced Boston Partners Asset Management as one of this fund's three subadvisors. Shareholders here have enjoyed strong long-term returns under this model, which also includes AIG SunAmerica Asset Management and Corp. and Allegiant Asset Management Company. Those two firms remain in place. The new firm is Dreman Value Management.

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