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Morningstar Minute: Fund Safety Even in Changing Conditions

Russel Kinnel

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Russ Kinnel: Peter Langerman and Philippe Brugere-Trelat run Mutual Global Discovery. They are very experienced managers. In fact, they first started at Mutual Series in the 1980s and '90s, left the firm, and then they were brought back when David Winters left the firm. And so they're very much steeped in the strategy.

And that strategy is an emphasis on safety, so, looking for companies with low valuations but solid businesses and companies that pay dividends. They will even build cash; they will go into debt. And that's all geared toward protecting against the downside.

If you look at the fund's record you can really see that. It tends to lose less in down markets and make a little less also in up markets. And in fact, if you look at the five-year record, it's lousy, but the longer-term record is quite strong. That's what appeals to us. They are very experienced managers but you also have the backing of very good analysts.

They delegate a lot to their analysts, and that's why we've seen over time the funds at Mutual Series tend to continue on even when managers change. The strategy doesn't change; the performance doesn't change. And that's because you have that deep analyst bench, even when there is a manager change.