Oregon Public Employes' Retirement Fund Wednesday terminated Barings Asset Management and Decision Services Inc. as international equity managers. Barings managed $300 million and DSI managed about $283 million for the $25 billion fund. Chris Hensel, consultant with Frank Russell Co., said Barings has suffered ``significant'' turnover, and DSI was suspect for ``the quality and depth of its research.'' The money will be put temporarily in an EAFE index fund run by Barclays Global.
The Oregon Investment Council also put Cursitor-Eaton on a ``watch list'' in hopes it can sustain a recent turnaround in performance. Russell and Wilshire assisted.
Michael Price will launch his latest mutual fund, the Franklin Financial Services Fund, in the third quarter. The new fund will invest in banks, thrifts, loan and mortgage companies, a sector in which Mr. Price has had some past successes. Mr. Price and his team manage $23 billion in the Franklin Mutual family now.
Access Research Inc., a consulting and research firm specializing in the defined contribution market, was acquired by the SPECTREM Group Inc. Terms were not available. Access and its eight employees will continue to operate under the Access name out of its current Windsor, Conn., offices. With the acquisition, SPECTREM gets the core investment research functions of Access and the marketing and public relations services it offers to money managers and record keepers, said Jeffrey Close, an Access vice president.
Robert G. Wuelfing, founder and former CEO of Access, will remain as a consultant during the transition and eventually will be replaced by Kent Novell, Access executive vice president. Mr. Wuelfing will continue working with the Society for Professional Recordkeepers and Administrators. He also will take with him control of Access' education and training activities.
Bank of New York and its affiliate BNY Western Trust Co. agreed to buy the institutional custody business of Wells Fargo & Co., which has $75 billion in custody assets. Bank of New York, before the purchase, had more than $3 trillion in custody assets. Terms of the deal weren't disclosed. The transaction is expected to be completed in the last half of the year. Clients will be served through BNY Western Trust's West Coast offices. Officials at the banks couldn't be reached for comment.