Strong Capital Management, Menomonee Falls, Wis., and Schafer Capital Management, New York, announced a strategic alliance to include the $204 million Schafer Value Fund as part of the Strong Funds family.
The agreement allows Schafer Capital to take advantage of Strong's servicing and distribution capabilities, while Strong will be able to offer Schafer's value approach to individuals, financial planners and 401(k) investors.
The no-load fund will be renamed the Strong Schafer Value Fund.
The fund is rated four stars by Morningstar and has posted average annual returns of 34.1%, 21.8% and 15%, compound annualized, for the one-, five- and 10-years through Dec. 31.
SADDLE BROOK, N.J. - As expected, Lexington Global Asset Managers Inc. has been spun off as a separate public company from its parent, Piedmont Management Co. Inc., New York. Piedmont transferred all of its ownership interests in various asset management subsidiaries to Lexington Global and received all of the common stock of Lexington in the form of dividends. Open trading in Lexington stock began Dec. 13.
Lexington offers mutual funds and separate accounts for institutional, retail and high net worth individuals.
BALTIMORE - First National Bank of Maryland hired SEI as the administrator and distributor of the bank's ARK proprietary mutual fund family. Assets in the eight funds now total $1.9 billion.
SEI will provide full administration and distribution for the funds, including accounting, share holder record keeping and marketing support, said Charles Cusic, senior vice president.
FNB Maryland is expanding the depth of its family of mutual funds. A Treasury money market fund reopened to institutional and retail investors Dec. 15. Two other funds are scheduled to open in January - a two-year Treasury fund and a large-capitalization domestic equity fund, Mr. Cusic said.
Plans to introduce an S&P 500 index fund also are in development, with the fund likely to open by mid-1996.
BOSTON - John Hancock Mutual Funds, Boston, introduced 11 institutional mutual funds with a variety of investment objectives.
The funds carry lower expense ratios than similar retail funds managed by Hancock and are open only to institutional investors, primarily from 401(k) plans.
The new funds are the John Hancock Active Bond, Balanced, Dividend Performers, Fundamental Value, Global Bond, Independence Diversified Core Equity II, Independence Growth, Independence Medium Capitalization, Independence Value, International Equity and multisector growth.
PORTSMOUTH, N.H. - Citizen's Trust, a socially responsible mutual fund company formerly called Working Assets Common Holdings, introduced a new class of institutional shares for two funds: Citizens Index Portfolio, a market-weighted index of the top 300 socially responsible companies in the United States, and the Working Assets Money Market portfolio.
The expense ratio for the new class of shares in the stock index fund is 65 basis points, compared with 139 basis points in retail; for money market shares, it is 48 basis points compared with 99 basis points in the retail class.
The funds avoid military contractors and other companies that do not meet social screens. The institutional shares require a minimum investment of $100,000.
The Citizen's Trust funds have $285 million in assets.
BOSTON - Richard W. Ingram joined Funds Distributor Inc., Boston, as senior vice president and director of client services, a new position. At the mutual fund sales, marketing and distribution firm, he will direct client service as well as consulting services, research and database reporting and treasury administration.
Prior to joining the firm, he was vice president and division manager of First Data investor Services Group.
NEW YORK - Ernst & Co. hired Koeneman Capital Management, Singapore, to serve as subadviser managing the new Ernst Asia mutual fund and National Mutual Funds Management, Melbourne, Australia, to serve as subadviser managing the new Ernst Resources fund, which will invest globally. The funds are the first two to be launched by the New York broker-dealer.
The new funds are open-end vehicles for the retail and defined contribution markets and for smaller institutional investors.
Three other Ernst funds are in registration with the Securities and Exchange Commission: the Ernst Global Smaller Companies fund; the Ernst Global Asset Allocation fund; and the Ernst Australasia Fixed Income fund.
DENVER - Janus Funds introduced two mutual funds Dec. 29, bringing the family of funds to 18.
The Janus Olympic Fund will seek long-term growth of capital through investments in companies of all sizes. Scott Schoelzel will manage the fund; he currently manages four Janus mutual funds on behalf of Aegon Insurance, as well as pension and private accounts.
The Janus High-Yield Bond Fund seeks high current income as its primary objective, investing in high-yield/high-risk fixed-income securities. Ronald Speaker is the portfolio manager. Mr. Speaker manages the Janus Flexible income Fund. Janus also raised its minimum initial investment to $2,500 from $1,000.
BALTIMORE - T. Rowe Price Associates Inc., Baltimore, introduced a global equity fund and a moderately aggressive bond mutual fund, which seeks high yield through investment in a mix of higher and lower quality corporate debt.
The global equity fund seeks large, established companies in at least five countries. Like the firm's other foreign funds, it is managed by Rowe Price-Fleming International, a joint venture between T. Rowe Price and Robert Fleming Holdings Ltd., London.
The bond fund invests primarily in investment grade corporate bonds, but can allocate up to one-third of its assets in high yield debt securities. Peter Van Dyke is the portfolio manager.
Christine Williamson contributed to this column.