Of the Ryans' current international funds, I will eliminate most, including Janus Worldwide (JANWX). The fund has gone through a series of managers in recent years while compiling an uninspiring record. The current manager has been on the job for a year, and it is too soon to tell how the fund will fare. A better choice is Scout International (UMBWX), which has a veteran manager who has achieved strong returns while taking modest risk.
During the past 10 years, Scout returned 9.1% annually, outdoing 85% of peers in the foreign large growth category. The fund buys rock-solid blue chips with healthy growth prospects. While the Ryans currently have up to $15,000 in Scout, I will put 20% of the model portfolio into the international fund.
Among the Ryans' large cap holdings is Hartford Capital Appreciation (ITHAX). The fund has a decent long-term record, but in recent years it has been volatile and suffered in downturns. For steadier large-cap performance, I will put 15% of assets in Hartford Dividend & Growth (IHGIX), a large value fund, and 15% in Fidelity Contrafund, a champion in the large growth category . Both those funds are among the steadier members of their categories.
The Ryans hold two midcap funds, Hartford Midcap (HFMCX) and Neuberger Berman Genesis (NBGNX). I will eliminate Hartford, which just changed managers, and put 10% of assets in the Neuberger fund, which has a veteran management team that has limited losses in downturns while delivering strong long-term returns.By sticking with a few solid funds like Neuberger, the Ryans could protect their nest eggs and perhaps generate enough income to cover the costs of serving in high office. This article was written by an independent contributor, separate from TheStreet's regular news coverage.