David Williams has stepped down from Columbia Value & Restructuring EVRAX, the final step in his retirement from a fund he
has helped run since 1992. The offering, which used to carry the Excelsior brand
name until a merger with Columbia, is eclectic. Williams focused on firms going
through restructurings or consolidation. While competitors eschewed such
debt-laden companies, Williams dove in if the firms had strong cash flows and
sensible price tags. The fund was more volatile than peers, but over Williams'
tenure its 12% annualized return exceeded the large-value category average by
more than 4 percentage points. Nick Smith and Guy Pope, Williams' comanagers,
remain on the fund. Smith has worked closely with Williams since 2005. Pope has
amassed a strong record at Columbia Contrarian Core LCCAX. That said, the fund's Neutral rating stems from
concerns about whether that duo can replicate Williams' long-term success.
Matthews Makes Manager Change
Capital Management, the advisor for the Matthews Asia Funds, announced Jesper
Madsen stepped down as comanager of Matthews Asian Growth & Income MACSX. Comanager Robert Horrocks is staying put while
Madsen will continue to run Matthews Asia Dividend MAPIX and Matthews China Dividend MCDFX. While Asian Growth & Income shareholders lose
a strong manager, this move was widely expected. Madsen had been pitching in on
this fund in the wake of the early 2011 departure of its previous manager,
Andrew Foster. (Foster now runs Seafarer Overseas Growth & Income SFGIX.)
Late last year, the firm elevated Kenneth Lowe to comanager at Growth &
Income. Lowe, who joined the firm in 2010, previously worked as an investment
manager at Martin Currie Investment Management in Scotland. Lowe's promotion
allows Madsen to focus on his two other charges. The moves don't affect the
fund's Silver rating.
Parnassus Promotes From Within
Parnassus Equity Income PRBLX now has a second portfolio manager. Benjamin Allen
joins lead manager Todd Ahlsten, who has run this socially responsible fund
since 2001. Allen joined Parnassus in 2005 as a senior research analyst and
became director of research in 2008. He was one of a team of three who have been
building a respectable record at Parnassus Mid-Cap PARMX
since they became comanagers in October 2008. Matthew Gershuny and Lori Keith
will continue comanaging the mid-cap offering.
Name Change for Perritt Offering
Perritt Emerging Opportunities PREOX, the U.S. domestic-stock fund with the smallest
average market cap, changed its name to Perritt Ultra MicroCap on April 30,
2012. The change reflects the fact the offering invests in companies with a
market cap of $300 million or less at the time of purchase.
Goldman Sachs Mid Cap Value GCMAX has announced it will close to new investors on
July 27, 2012. The fund had $8 billion in assets as of May 2, 2012.
Following the approval by its board of trustees, Buffalo Science
& Technology BUFTX will be renamed Buffalo Discovery, effective June
MainStay Government MGVAX added Steven Rich as a manager. The fund is
subadvised by MainStay affiliate MacKay Shields. Rich joined the firm in 1995
and is head of structured products at the firm.
BlackRock Multi-Sector Bond Portfolio BMSAX will be revamped in June 2012.
The fund will be renamed BlackRock Secured Credit Portfolio, it will get a new
benchmark index and new managers. The fund will focus on selecting secured
instruments, such as bank loans and bonds, and will no longer be limited to
investing a maximum of 35% of assets in high-yield bonds or maintaining a
portfolio average credit quality above investment grade.