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Nov 28, 2014

Poor performance catching up with active stock fund managers

BOSTON (Reuters) – Stock-picking fund managers are testing their investors’ patience with some of the worst investment returns in decades.

With bad bets on financial shares, missed opportunities in technology stocks and too much cash on the sidelines, roughly 85 percent of active large-cap stock funds have lagged their benchmark indexes through Nov. 25 this year, according to an analysis by Lipper, a Thomson Reuters research unit. It is likely their worst comparative showing in 30 years, Lipper said.

Nov 20, 2014

U.S. managed assets with socially responsible criteria rise – report

NEW YORK, Nov 20 (Reuters) – The share of U.S. managed
assets invested with environmental, social or similar criteria
rose 50 percent over the past two years, a foundation that
tracks the field said, because of new disclosure standards and
client concern about areas like climate change.

U.S. assets in strategies using what are often termed
“socially responsible investing” guidelines stood at $6.57
trillion at the start of 2014, or 18 percent of total assets
under professional management, up from $3.74 trillion, or 12
percent of the total at the start of 2012, said officials at US
SIF – The Forum for Sustainable and Responsible Investment.

Nov 19, 2014

Calvert’s Roy says high-yield market offers ‘some good gems’

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Low default rates and slow U.S. growth mean that high-yield bonds remain an attractive investment area, Calvert Investment Management bond chief Cathy Roy said on Wednesday.

“Within the sector you can find some good gems,” said Roy, Calvert’s chief investment officer for fixed income, speaking at the Reuters Global Investment Outlook Summit in New York.

Nov 18, 2014

High returns keep DoubleLine’s Padilla in EM corporates

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Emerging market debt will be a safer bet than equities in those developing countries, said DoubleLine Capital’s director of emerging markets fixed income Luz Padilla.

Returns for emerging market debt could reach into the high single digits for the next 12 months, said Padilla, a level she said could beat U.S. investment-grade returns and even U.S. high-yield returns, speaking at the Reuters Global Investment Outlook Summit in New York on Tuesday.

Nov 13, 2014

Legg Mason bond flows best since ’07, helped by Bill Gross move

BOSTON, Nov 13 (Reuters) – Legg Mason Inc said on
Thursday the company’s best month of bond inflows since 2007 was
due partly to the departure of famed bond manager Bill Gross
from Pimco in September.

Chief Executive Officer Joseph Sullivan said about half of
Legg Mason’s $5.1 billion in fixed-income inflows in October was
tied to the surprise decision by Gross to join smaller rival
Janus Capital Group.

Nov 10, 2014

Janus October net inflows largest of 2014 after Gross’ arrival

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Janus Capital Group Inc posted $1.1 billion in net inflows in October, the largest net deposits this year, after the hiring of Bill Gross, one of the bond market’s most renowned investor.

The Janus Global Unconstrained portfolio, which Gross started managing in October, attracted an estimated $364 million in client deposits in the first full month since Gross’ arrival, bringing assets to $442.9 million through October 31, according to Morningstar data on Monday.

Nov 7, 2014

Funds seek vote on chair title for Bank of America CEO

BOSTON, Nov 7 (Reuters) – Two big pension funds have asked
Bank of America Corp to hold a shareholder vote next
spring on the chairman’s title recently given to its Chief
Executive Brian Moynihan, extending a running battle in
corporate governance.

Officials at the California State Teachers’ Retirement
System and in the office of New York City Comptroller Scott
Stringer said the additional role given to Moynihan went against
the will expressed by shareholders who voted to strip previous
CEO Ken Lewis of the chairmanship in 2009.

Nov 7, 2014

U.S. funds turn eye to major oil stocks amid volatile market

BOSTON, Nov 6 (Reuters) – Welcome back “Big Oil.”

U.S. stock funds with big bets on the stars of the American
shale-energy boom have taken a beating recently amid plunging
oil prices. In response, portfolio managers say they are turning
an eye back toward big, integrated oil stocks, which have
weathered the energy sector sell-off better for the most part.

The strong balance sheets and diversified global operations
of majors like Exxon Mobil Corp, Chevron Corp and BP plc, have
sheltered index funds and some active portfolio managers from
the worst of a volatile ride on energy markets, where oil prices
have plunged 21 percent since early August.

Nov 5, 2014

Labor pension adviser wants broader SEC probe of Walgreen

BOSTON (Reuters) – Broadening its criticism of Walgreen Co, labor pension adviser CtW Investment Group said it has asked the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to probe whether legal claims made by a former company executive show violations of securities rules.

A complaint CtW said it delivered to the SEC on Wednesday, the latest in a series it has brought to the agency, outlined what it called apparent rule violations based on details made by Wade Miquelon, Walgreen’s former chief financial officer. A defamation lawsuit he filed last month has opened an unusual view into an internal battle at the country’s largest drugstore chain.

Nov 4, 2014

Insight – Top investors stay loyal to big name corporate founders

BOSTON (Reuters) – For good stock market bets, some top investors can’t be too bothered by details like corporate profits: instead, they pick companies run by their founders.

Four of the top six performing companies on Nasdaq over the past five years as of Oct. 29 are run by founders, including Bruce Cozadd’s No. 1 Jazz Pharmaceuticals plc and Reed Hastings’ No. 6 NetFlix Inc. Jazz is up 2,426 percent and internet streaming company Netflix has gained 584 percent, according to an analysis of companies with market caps of $10 billion (6.25 billion pounds) or more by FactSet Research Systems Inc.

    • About Ross

      "I cover mutual funds and the companies that offer them including Fidelity Investments and Legg Mason Inc, plus related topics like retirement savings issues and socially responsible investing. I'm based in Boston and joined Reuters in 2009."
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