DUBLIN, Ohio - R. Meeder & Associates, a firm known for its asset allocation mutual funds, has quietly been raking in assets for a new money market fund geared to institutions and plans to develop a bundled 401(k) product.
Its 91/2-year-old $170 million retail money market fund, part of the FlexFunds family, was the top ranked fund by IBC/Donoghue Inc. for the nine years ended June 30. The six-month-old institutional fund already has $75 million from such corporate cash clients as Borden Inc.; the Ohio Educational Association; Ohio State University; Capital University; Star Bank; and Commerce National Bank; as well as other funds such as several locals of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers; Roofers, Waterproofers & Allied Workers, United Union; Bricklayers International Union; Plumbers & Pipefitters Union and the Catholic Foundation; Consolidated Stores Inc.; Kansas Health Foundation; and Motorists Insurance Cos.
On the 401(k) front, the firm wants to team up with a partner to provide a bundled product.
Among other initiatives, the firm is registering two load funds. One will be called The Tactical Asset Allocation fund and the other will be a utilities stock fund subadvised by Miller/Howard Investments, Woodstock, N.Y.
The load funds will not carry the FlexFunds name. The utilities fund will be the BTB Utilities fund, because its returns are expected to be "better than bonds."
The firm also plans to create money market funds for third parties using Hub and Spoke software of Signature Financial Corp.
"We're talking with several smaller brokerage firms that are scrambling to be ready for T+3 settlement by July 1995. One of the best ways is to have their own money market fund. It's a service we can provide at very low cost with a very effective yield," said Philip A. Voelker, senior vice president and portfolio manager of the money market fund.
The firm also is talking to mutual fund companies that need a money market fund or want a new one. The no-load FlexFunds are available through Charles Schwab's Mutual Fund OneSource and Jack White's no transaction fee program, as well as regional brokers.
Schwab redemption change
SAN FRANCISCO - Charles Schwab & Co. Inc. has changed the redemption policy for no-transaction-fee mutual funds available through its Mutual Fund OneSource program.
Under the new policy, shares held for at least 90 days may be sold without penalty, as compared to the former six-month holding period required. The period drops to 60 days for investment advisers who transmit all of their clients' mutual fund trades to Schwab electronically.
Instead of charging transaction fees when a shareholder exceeds five redemptions a year, investors will be allowed 15 redemptions before incurring fees.
"Most Mutual Fund OneSource customers follow a long-term, buy-and-hold investing strategy," said Beth Sawi, executive vice president, mutual funds. "We do understand, however, that some investors find it necessary to buy and sell funds more often in reaction to changing market conditions. We believe this flexible policy will make it easier for them."