American Beacon Global Evolution Frontier Markets Income Fund
American Beacon Global Evolution Frontier Markets Income Fund (oh, dear God) will seek income, with capital appreciation as a secondary objective, by investing primarily frontier and emerging market sovereign and quasi-sovereign debt. The fund will be managed by a team from Global Evolution USA, LLC, a subsidiary of Global Evolution Fondsmæglerselskab A/S. But you already knew that, right? The Global Evolution people have been running this strategy for about 30 months but the draft prospectus leaves the performance numbers blank. The minimum initial investment is $2,500 the opening expense ratio is 1.54%.
B. Riley Diversified Equity Fund
B. Riley Diversified Equity Fund will seek capital appreciation by investing in (here’s their text) “the equity securities of U.S. companies within a range of the market capitalizations of the issuers selected by the B. Riley & Co. Research Group (the “Research Group”) as “Buy” rated equity securities in its coverage universe.” If one of my students had written that sentence, I would have scribbled “huh?” next to it. Charles P. Hastings has managed the Fund since its inception in February 2014. The firm benchmark’s its equity composite against the small-cap Russell 2000; the composite has had some dismal years and some great ones. The minimum initial investment is $5,000. The opening expense ratio has not yet been revealed.
Conestoga SMid Cap Fund
Conestoga SMid Cap Fund will seek long-term growth by investing in mid- to large-cap common stocks. The managers look to buy growth-at-a-reasonable-price. The fund will be managed by Robert M. Mitchell and David M. Lawson, members of the firm’s four person investment management team. I hope to talk with the managers in the month after launch. The story is that Conestoga has a very good small cap fund and a very weak mid-cap fund. They asked, some months ago, if the Observer might hold off writing anything about the mid-cap fund, presumably because they had this one in the works. I still don’t have much of an explanation for the weakness of the mid-cap fund and no idea of whether the launch here signals imminent closure of the other. They won’t be able to talk until after launch, but I’d certainly counsel having a long conversation with them before proceeding. The minimum initial investment is $2500 and the opening expense ratio is 1.35%.
Centre Active U.S. Treasury Fund
Centre Active U.S. Treasury Fund will seek maximize investors’ total return through capital appreciation and current income. The plan is to actively manage a portfolio of 0-12 year Treasury bonds, which an eye to profiting from, or minimizing the hit from, interest rate changes. The fund will be managed by T. Kirkham Barneby of Hudson Canyon Investment Counselors. The minimum initial investment is $5000 and the opening expense ratio is 0.85%.
Foundry Micro Cap Value Fund
Foundry Micro Cap Value Fund will seek capital appreciation by investing in microcap value stocks. The fund will be managed by Eric J. Holmes of Foundry Partners, who managed this strategy in separate Fifth-Third Bank accounts from 2004. The separate accounts seemed, on whole, to offer pretty good downside protection relative to their microcap benchmark. The minimum initial investment will be $10,000 and the opening expense ratio is 1.62%.
Foundry Small Cap Value Fund
Foundry Small Cap Value Fund The fund will be managed by Eric J. Holmes of Foundry Partners, who managed this strategy in separate Fifth-Third Bank accounts from 2004. They published performance numbers for their separate accounts but then benchmarked the small cap value accounts against a microcap value index, so I’m not entirely sure about what conclusion to draw. The minimum initial investment will be $10,000 and the opening expense ratio is 1.42%.
Giralda Risk-Managed Growth Fund
Giralda Risk-Managed Growth Fund will seek to do something, somehow. You may buy their “I” shares for $2500. That’s all I know because the first 17 pages of the prospectus appear to be missing.
Harbor Small Cap Growth Opportunities Fund
Harbor Small Cap Growth Opportunities Fund will seek long-term growth by investing in common and preferred stocks of small cap companies. They will focus on rapidly growing small cap companies that are in an early or transitional stage of their development. The fund will be managed by a team from Elk Creek Partners. Harbor has a rep for hiring very good sub-advisors, often folks who offer a clone of an existing fund at a price discount. The Elk Creek team appears to have started at Montgomery Asset Management, which was bought by Wells Capital Management just after the turn of the century, and has been managing money for Wells (as in “Fargo”) since then. The minimum initial investment is $2500, reduced to $1,000 for tax-advantaged accounts and the opening expense ratio is 1.27%.
KF Griffin Blue Chip Covered Call Fund
KF Griffin Blue Chip Covered Call Fund will seek to provide total return with lower volatility than equity markets in general. They will invest in 25-35 dividend-paying, large-capitalization foreign and domestic stocks of domestic and will write covered call options on 50-100% of the portfolio. They’re looking for generating an equal percent of return from capital appreciation, dividends and call premiums. The fund will be managed by Douglas M. Famigletti, President and Chief Investment Officer of Griffin Assets Management. The manager’s separate account composite averaged 13.8% from 2009 – mid 2013, while the benchmark S&P 500 Buy-Write Index clocked in at 10.3%. The minimum initial investment is $2500 and the opening expense ratio is capped at 1.50%.
PIMCO Balanced Income Fund
PIMCO Balanced Income Fund will seek to maximize current income while providing long-term capital appreciation by investing globally in dividend-paying common and preferred stocks and all flavors of fixed- and floating-rate instruments across all global fixed income sectors. They might achieve sector exposure through derivatives and might invest up to 50% in high yield bonds. The manager has not yet been named. The minimum initial investment for “D” shares is $1000 and the opening expense ratio is not yet set.
QCI Balanced Fund
QCI Balanced Fund will seek to balance current income and principal conservation with the opportunity for long-term growth. In pursuit of that entirely honorable objective they’ll invest in mid- to large-cap stocks and investment-grade bonds, with the potential for a smattering of high yield debt. The fund will be managed by Edward Shill, who has been with QCI since the early 1990s and is now their CIO. The prospectus offers no immediate evidence of his distinction in executing this strategy. The minimum initial investment is $1,000 and the opening expense ratio is 1.25%.
SPDR Floating Rate Treasury ETF
SPDR Floating Rate Treasury ETF will track an as-yet unnamed index of the as-yet unissued floating rate Treasuries. The fund will be managed by Todd Bean and Jeff St. Peters of State Street Global Advisors. The opening expense ratio is not yet set.
WisdomTree Floating Rate Treasury Fund
WisdomTree Floating Rate Treasury Fund will track the WisdomTree Floating Rate Treasury Index which will, more or less faithfully, track the value of floating rate securities which are set to be issued by the Treasury in January 2014. The fund will be managed by a team from WisdomTree. The opening expense ratio is not yet set.
World Energy Fund
World Energy Fund will seek growth and income by investing, long and short, in a wide range of energy-related financial instruments issued in the U.S. and markets around the world. The fund will be managed by a team from Cavanal Hill Investment Management. Why yes, I do think that’s a potentially explosive undertaking. Why no, the prospectus does not offer any evidence of the team’s experience with, or competence at, such investing. Why do you ask? The minimum initial investment is $1000 the opening expense ratio is 1.17%.
Zacks Dividend Strategy Fund
Zacks Dividend Strategy Fund will seek capital appreciation and dividend income by investing, mostly, in dividend-paying large cap stocks. The fund will be managed by Benjamin L. Zacks and Mitch E. Zacks. The duo runs a bad market-neutral fund, mediocre all-cap one and entirely reasonable, newer small cap fund – all under the Zacks banner. Zacks runs a stock-rating service whose ratings might contribute the portfolio construction but that’s not exactly spelled out. The minimum initial investment is $2500, reduced to $1000 for tax-advantaged accounts and $500 for accounts set up with an automatic investing plan. The opening expense ratio is not yet available.