It may be a shaky market for tech stocks, but that hasn't stopped
Turner Investment Partners
from rolling out three new growth funds.
The fund shop that's posted fat returns in recent years thanks to its tech expertise launched the
Global Top 40
Wireless & Communications
funds this week.
previewed the funds on April 3. Two international growth funds,
, may follow this summer.
If there's a broader message to the three funds' launch, it's probably that pros known for their tech acumen are increasingly focusing on wireless technology, which helps cell phones and handheld devices manage schedules and connect to the Internet.
There are currently
two funds out there that focus strictly on wireless stocks and
is planning to
launch another in September. Also, wireless stocks like
are top holdings in several
whatifi.com Hires Barclays to Run Funds
Fledgling online money manager
has tapped index-fund titan
Barclays Global Fund Advisors
to run their first four stock and bond funds.
Barclays, the world's largest institutional money manager with some $780 billion under management, will run the
Whatifi S&P 500 Index
Whatifi Extended Market Index
Whatifi International Index
Whatifi Total Bond Index
funds, according to preliminary paperwork filed Wednesday with the
Securities & Exchange Commission
Web site, whatifi.com, which is geared toward young professional types, plans to offer a host of financial services, including financial advice and its own line of mutual funds.
The funds will track the
Morgan Stanley Capital International EAFE
Lehman Brothers Government/Corporate Bond
indices, respectively. Thanks to San Francisco-based whatifi.com's plan to subsidize some fees, each no-load fund's expenses will be 0.55%. Each will also levy a 1% redemption fee on shares sold within 90 days of purchase.
While the funds' expenses are lower than the average stock and bond funds in their category,
offers similar funds with lower expenses.
Leuthold Weeden Shoots for Bears and Bulls
Leuthold Weeden Capital
has rolled out two new funds: one for bears and one for bulls.
On June 15 the small Minneapolis shop launched the
fund and the
Leuthold Select Industries
fund, according to a Wednesday company announcement. The Short fund will essentially bet against a market rise by devoting its assets primarily to short positions, which allow investors to profit from falling stock prices. Shorting is essentially the practice of borrowing a stock at its current price, promising to return the shares down the road. If the stock's price falls in the meantime, you turn a profit by paying less for the shares you borrowed. Of course, if it rises, you lose money.
The Select Industries fund follows a sector-rotation strategy. Using quantitative models, the fund's managers will try to identify sectors, subsectors, and other stock groupings they think are poised for growth. The all-cap fund will rotate among these sectors, trying to focus on the hottest areas at any given time.
The short fund's prospectus includes the performance of a short portfolio the managers have run for private account holders. From 1995 through 1999, the strategy failed to post a positive calendar-year return. In 1994, the strategy did post a 2.7% return, topping the S&P 500's 1.2% gain.
Due to its strategy, the sector-rotation fund might have high turnover and could get hurt if the managers' quantitative models point to the wrong blend of sectors.
Steven Leuthold and Charles Zender co-manage the Short fund and Leuthold pairs with James Floyd to run Select Industries. Leuthold has a solid track record on his other retail fund,
Leuthold Core Investment
. The fund, which blends stock and bond investments, has averaged a 14.3% gain over the past three years, according to
. That beats more than 85% of its peers and trails the S&P 500 by 4.4 percentage points.
Neither of the new funds will impose a load or sales charge. The Grizzly and Select Industries funds' annual expenses are expected to be 2.5% and 1.95%, according to the fund's prospectus. The average domestic stock fund's expense ratio is 1.38%, according to Morningstar.
Fund Openings, Closings, Manager Moves.