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Fund Times: Updates for Aberdeen, GMO, Hyperion, Select, terminated funds

Phillip Gray  |  21 Apr 2008Text size  Decrease  Increase  |  

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In recent news from the funds management industry you may have missed, Aberdeen has added an Australian shares analyst and launched a new bond fund; GMO has hired a trader/dealer; a senior portfolio manager has left Brisbane boutique Hyperion; Select has rebadged several funds; and 45 funds have been terminated since the beginning of this year.

 

Aberdeen adds analyst, launches Diversified Bond Fund
Aberdeen Asset Management has appointed Camille Brabant as an investment analyst, reporting to Head of Australian Equities Mark Daniels. Brabant was previously Vice-President, Institutional Equity Research Sales at Citi Australia, and has also worked at BNP Paribas, broking and corporate advisory firm Burdett Buckeridge Young, and Foster Stockbroking. Brabant will contribute to the management of Aberdeen Australian Equities.

Aberdeen's largest positions at 29 February 2008 were in BHP Billiton (10.88 percent), Rio Tinto (7.80 percent), and QBE Insurance (6.33 percent). The fund's –2.76 percent return over the year to 31 March 2008 outperformed the –7.04 percent from the market, and the retail large-cap blend peer group's average return of –7.93 percent.

We moved our Morningstar Recommendations for former Deutsche Australian shares funds (including this one) to 'Hold' last year, in anticipation of changes to come to both personnel and process following the sale of the local Deutsche funds management businesses to Aberdeen. We'll be reassessing this in several months, when we undertake our forthcoming sector review of large-cap strategies.

In other Aberdeen news, the firm has also launched a new diversified fixed interest fund, Aberdeen Core Plus Fixed Income. The fund is structured as a core allocation to Australian bonds, augmented by allocations to global credit securities, emerging markets and high-yield debt, and currency and interest rate strategies. Aberdeen's aim is to outperform the UBS Composite Bond Index by 1.50 percent per annum.

Aberdeen joins a number of other fund managers which have over the past couple of years launched similar multi-strategy income funds, among them Credit Suisse, ING, Macquarie, Perpetual, PIMCO, and Putnam. We assessed a number of these in our recent review of income funds, and detailed research reports on these investment strategies are available in Adviser Workstation.

 

GMO appoints Domestic Equities Trader
Quant shop GMO has hired Brad Gehan as a Portfolio Trader (dealer). Gehan's background includes time at Goldman Sachs JBWere in private client advisory role, four years with Morgan Stanley as a sales trader, and most recently a year at broker Tolhurst as a senior dealer.  Gehan will apply his trading skills to GMO Australian Equity.

The past nine months have seen more staff change at GMO than the firm has experienced in quite some time. After the departures of Max Cappetta and Anthony Corr in August last year, new Head of Australian Equities Rick Suvak arrived in January, and Research Analyst Michael Booth and Portfolio Trader Steve Castellan left in February and March respectively. We moved our Morningstar Recommendation for GMO's Australian shares strategy from 'Highly Recommended' to 'Investment Grade' following Cappetta and Corr's departures, and as with Aberdeen, will be re-evaluating this in coming months.

 

Hyperion loses Senior Portfolio Manager
Hyperion Asset Management Senior Portfolio Manager Andrew Spence has left the Brisbane boutique after only a short stint. Spence joined the firm in June last year after three years as a principal and senior investment consultant at Watson Wyatt, where he was a senior member of the firm's fund manager research team. Before Watson Wyatt, Spence spent nine years at Credit Suisse Asset Management, initially as Deputy Head of Balanced Funds, and then as an Australian shares portfolio manager.

Hyperion's A$48.44 million large-cap growth Hyperion Australian Growth Companies returned –9.24 percent over the year to 31 March 2008 (-7.04 percent from the S&P/ASX200 Accumulation Index), and 15.73 percent over the past three years (index 13.85 percent). The fund's principal holdings at 31 March 2008 included Brambles, Macquarie Group, Woolworths, Billabong International, and Wotif.com.

 

Select rebadges funds
Select Asset Management has rebadged several of its funds. Select CEF Portfolio is now Select Listed Investments Fund, while Select Private Equity Portfolio is now called Select Private Equity Fund. The manager said the change was to label the funds as portfolio building blocks rather than solutions, while the new name for the Listed Investments Fund was intended to represent the investment approach more accurately. The Listed Investments Fund, launched on 1 April 2005, invests in listed investment companies, its portfolio recently including Babcock & Brown Capital, Biotech Capital, GoldLink IncomePlus (whose ownership has been in play), Fat Prophets Australia Fund, and Macquarie Private Equity Group.

 

More fund terminations
Finally, 45 funds have been terminated since the beginning of the year, prominent among them 16 Goldman Sachs JBWere specialty and nil entry fee funds, six AMP legacy products, and 17 older National Asset Management superannuation funds. Table 1 shows the funds terminated since 1 January 2008. Long/short Asian equities boutique Voyager Pan Asia, in which BT Financial Group took a stake in September 2006 and for which Equity Trustees was acting as responsible entity, was shut down in March after the departure of a key investment team member.

APIR Code Fund Name

 Termination Date

UBS0001AU UBS Cash Bond

11-Apr-08

NAB0502AU Nat Aust Super Bond - Cash

7-Apr-08

NAB0503AU Nat Aust Super Bond - Fixed Interest

7-Apr-08

NAB0521AU Nat Aust Super Bond - Capital Guaranteed

7-Apr-08

NAB0526AU Nat Aust Super Bond - International

7-Apr-08

NAB0525AU Nat Aust Super Bond - Equities

7-Apr-08

NAB0524AU Nat Aust Super Bond - Property

7-Apr-08

NAB0522AU Nat Aust Super Bond - Capital Stable

7-Apr-08

NAB0523AU Nat Aust Super Bond - Balanced

7-Apr-08

JBW0117AU Goldman Sachs JBWere International NEF

1-Apr-08

JBW0116AU Goldman Sachs JBWere Diversified Growth NEF

1-Apr-08

JBW0115AU Goldman Sachs JBWere Australian Equities NEF

1-Apr-08

NAB0424AU Nat Aust Personal Super - Property

31-Mar-08

NAB0401AU Nat Aust Personal Super - SuperBanker

31-Mar-08

NAB0426AU Nat Aust Personal Super - International

31-Mar-08

NAB0403AU Nat Aust Personal Super - Fixed Interest

31-Mar-08

NAB0425AU Nat Aust Personal Super - Equity

31-Mar-08

NAB0402AU Nat Aust Personal Super - Cash

31-Mar-08

NAB0422AU Nat Aust Personal Super - Capital Stable

31-Mar-08

NAB0423AU Nat Aust Personal Super - Balanced

31-Mar-08

NAB0421AU Nat Aust Personal Super - Capital Secure

31-Mar-08

HOW0046AU Challenger Wholesale Enhanced Cash

25-Mar-08

ETL0076AU Voyager Pan Asia

19-Mar-08

AMP0528AU AMP MasterPlan - Balanced Growth

12-Mar-08

AMP0527AU AMP MasterPlan - Balanced Direct

12-Mar-08

AMP0526AU AMP MasterPlan - Conservative

12-Mar-08

AMP0991AU AMP MultiFund FIP-BlackRock Global Bond

11-Mar-08

AMP0119AU AMP MultiFund SB - Balanced Direct

11-Mar-08

AMP0724AU AMP Deferred Annuity NEF - Balanced Fund

11-Mar-08

JBW0020AU Goldman Sachs JBWere Hedged Global Small Co Wsale

11-Mar-08

JBW0107AU Goldman Sachs JBWere Japan Wholesale Fund

11-Mar-08

JBW0106AU Goldman Sachs JBWere Japan Fund

11-Mar-08

JBW0101AU Goldman Sachs JBWere Global High Yield Wsale

11-Mar-08

JBW0100AU Goldman Sachs JBWere Global High Yield Fund

11-Mar-08

JBW0112AU Goldman Sachs JBWere Global Technology Wsale

11-Mar-08

JBW0110AU Goldman Sachs JBWere Global Technology Fund

11-Mar-08

JBW0105AU Goldman Sachs JBWere Europe Wholesale Fund

11-Mar-08

JBW0104AU Goldman Sachs JBWere Europe Fund

11-Mar-08

JBW0116AU Goldman Sachs JBWere Diversified Growth NEF

11-Mar-08

JBW0015AU Goldman Sachs JBWere Fixed Interest Wholesale

11-Mar-08

JBW0117AU Goldman Sachs JBWere International NEF

11-Mar-08

JBW0115AU Goldman Sachs JBWere Australian Equities NEF

11-Mar-08

ZUR0198AU Zurich Wholesale Super - High Growth Fund

4-Mar-08

CSA0100AU Credit Suisse - Cash Management Trust

27-Feb-08

GMO0005AU GMO Australian Equity Momentum Trust

25-Jan-08