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Chuck Joyce Steps Down From GMO Quality

Joyce is also set to leave GMO. Also, American Century's LIVESTRONG funds withstand Lance Armstrong controversy, Dreyfus' CEO departs, manager changes at Fidelity and American Century, and analyst reductions at UBS Global Asset Management.

Morningstar Fund Analysts, 01/24/2013

William "Chuck" Joyce stepped down as the lead manager on GMO Quality GQETX on Friday, Jan. 18.

Joyce, 42, also is leaving GMO, where he has worked since 1998. However, Joyce will remain with the firm through June to ease the transition. Current GMO Quality comanagers Tom Hancock and David Cowan will remain on the fund. Although the quality factor (that is, sticking with companies with above-average returns on equity) has been a key part of GMO's process since the early 1980s, Joyce was the main architect behind this fund and he had been lead manager since its 2004 inception. His experience will be missed.

However, Joyce's departure should not be too disruptive. Hancock, who has been a comanager for nearly four years, and Cowan provide continuity. Plus, the two other members of the GMO quality team, Kim Mayer and Hassan Chowdhry, will remain with the firm. Both have been with GMO for about six years.

One change, though, is that the quality function will be integrated throughout GMO's equity effort. In the past, the quality team had operated fairly independently, but now the entire research team will share this responsibility.

American Century LIVESTRONG Target-Date Funds Survive Armstrong’s Confession
Though Lance Armstrong suffered a blow to his reputation following his public confession to doping last week, the American Century LIVESTRONG funds appear to be so far unscathed from their association with the disgraced athlete. The target-date series has enjoyed net inflows in all of its funds so far in January 2013, as well as in calendar year 2012.

The firm has not publicly stated any intent to change the LIVESTRONG funds' branding. According to an American Century representative, the firm's relationship is not with Armstrong but with the LIVESTRONG charity, which severed ties with Armstrong in late 2012.

Dreyfus CEO Steps Down
Jonathan Baum, the chairman and CEO of Dreyfus, resigned from the firm on Monday, Jan. 21. According to the firm's statement, Baum left to pursue other interests. Dreyfus president J. Charles Cardona will manage Baum's former responsibilities in the interim.

Baum joined Dreyfus in 2006 and became CEO in February 2008 after the previous CEO and president, Tom Eggers, retired. At the time, Baum was the firm's vice-chair of distribution. Prior to joining Dreyfus, Baum was the chief operating officer of Scudder Investments, now part of DWS.

Morningstar fund analysts cover more than 1,700 mutual funds and write regular commentary covering fund industry news, fund investing trends, picks, portfolio planning, international investing, and more.
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