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New Skippers for Smith Barney Large Cap Value

Fund's strategy remains the same.

In February 2001, Smith Barney Large Cap Value Fund (SBCIX) got a new management team. Former skippers Ellen Sonsino and Frances Root left the firm, and were replaced by Giri Bogavelli and Steven Craige. Neither Bogavelli nor Craige has run a retail mutual fund before, so neither of them has a public investment record from which to draw conclusions. However, both of them have managed money in this fund's value style before, and they both worked on the fund with Sonsino since early 2000. With the duo's help, Sonsino introduced a cash flow yield screen to stock selection, which led the fund to buy some tech stocks like First Data (FDC) and Intel (INTC)

Bogavelli says that investors shouldn't anticipate big changes with how this fund is run. He and Craige will maintain the fund's concentration in between 45 and 55 names, and they will still look for stocks that are trading cheaply on a number of valuation measures and that have a catalyst for change. While tech stocks may be hitting their screens more frequently these days, management isn't ready to jump whole-hog into that sector. Bogavelli says many of those stocks still aren't cheap enough to be attractive. 

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