Dan Culloton: Three prominent fund managers probably wish that the recent sell-off would last longer.
At the end of July, three Morningstar Medalist funds--Fairholme (FAIRX), FPA Capital (FPPTX), and AMG Yacktman Focused (YAFFX)--ranked at the bottom of their respective categories.
These three funds all have large cash stakes and idiosyncratic, concentrated, value-oriented portfolios. So, it's not that unusual for them to have extended periods of underperformance.
It's also not that unusual for them to bounce back quickly during market corrections, and that's just what they did. For the month through Aug. 25, they ranked near the top of their respective categories.
While that is a short time period, it's a good sign. Their recent behavior is consistent with the way these strategies have behaved over the long term. It's yet to be seen if this outperformance will continue; but at least during the recent market break, these managers have delivered what they promised--downside protection.