LOS ANGELES ( TheStreet) -- Russian companies including Lukoil (LUKOY), Rosneft (ROSN) and Vimpelcom (VIP) powered the Metzler/Payden European Emerging Markets Fund (MPYMX) to a 52% return in the past year, the ninth-best performance of 3,250 U.S. mutual funds that buy stocks abroad.
The $198 million mutual fund doubled last year and has fallen only once during a calendar year since it was started in 2002. Still, it plunged 67% in 2008, when global stock markets collapsed.
Lukoil, Russia's top non-state oil company, Rosneft, Russia's biggest oil producer, and Vimpelcom, Russia's second-largest mobile-phone firm, are the fund's three biggest holdings, accounting for almost 12% of assets at the end of March. Energy stocks make up a fifth of the mutual fund, the second-largest industry after financials, at 25%. Materials are the No. 3 sector, representing 18% of assets.
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