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Janus Closes Doors on $50 Billion Flagship Fund

The hot firm plans December launch for similar 'Janus 2' fund.

Updated from 9:27 a.m. EDT

(JANSX)

Janus fund, the Denver growth shop's massive $50 billion flagship, closed to new investors at the close of business Tuesday. The shop has also filed preliminary paperwork for a substantially similar

Janus 2

fund with a Dec. 29 target launch date, according to a Wednesday company announcement.

The flagship fund is the fourth-largest in the nation and the latest in a

string of Janus fund closings.

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Although the Janus fund has closed, investors can buy shares if they're already shareholders, work with an investment adviser who currently has client accounts in the fund or already have the fund among the options on their defined contribution retirement plans. The fund has taken in $3.6 billion this year through the end of July, making it the 10th-best seller in the nation.

The popular no-load fund's closure is just the latest of several recent fund closings at Janus, where now just more than half of the firm's direct-sold stock funds are shuttered. The fund, run by Blaine Rollins and John Schreiber since the start of the year, has held its own during a challenging year. It's up 5.8% since Jan. 1, beating more than 40% of its large-cap growth peers, according to

Morningstar

.

Schreiber will hold the reins of the planned Janus 2 fund. Janus' statement didn't note whether or not Schreiber will continue to co-manage Janus once its sibling launches.

Before this year, Chief Investment Officer Jim Craig had held the reins. Craig

left Janus last month to run a charitable foundation he has established with his wife. But he did hint that

new Janus funds were in the pipeline.