Morningstar Fund Ratings: Weekly Round-up

ANALYST RATINGS: This week fund analysts reveal new ratings for Axa WF Framlington and Legg Mason, and upgrades for Artisan and JPM

Morningstar Analysts 9 May, 2018 | 10:47AM

New Ratings

AXA WF Framlington Global Convertibles – Bronze

Mara Dobrescu

Marc Basselier has managed this fund since its inception in late 2010, after building a long and successful track record on the firm’s European convertible-bond offering. He employs a focused, bottom-up-driven strategy, with a long investment horizon, which has proved its worth relative to competitors and to its benchmark index. Nevertheless, the limited resources dedicated to convertible bonds at the firm and the manager’s workload weigh on our degree of conviction to some extent. 

Legg Mason Western Asset US Core Plus Bond – Silver

Irene Ruiz Espejo

Ken Leech, Western’s CIO, has been at the helm of this strategy since 1998, when it was launched for US investors. This Ireland-domiciled version was then brought to market in 2007. Leech is supported by four additional fund managers, and they leverage Western’s well-resourced macroeconomic and research teams. The process is robust and well-executed, combining top-down macro views with security selection.

The fund emphasises the team’s highest convictions while maintaining a healthy level of diversification among its active bets. The fund strongly underperformed in 2008, but from then on the fund’s performance has been comfortably above its average competitor and its benchmark. The fund’s deep and experienced resources, along with its robust and well-executed process, make it an appealing option for investors looking for USD Diversified Bond space.

Upgrades

Artisan Global ValueGold

Peter Brunt

This Ireland-domiciled fund is managed by Dan O'Keefe and David Samra as a near-identical clone of the US mutual fund Artisan Global Value. Backed by stable and strong analytical resources, the managers apply the same distinct approach to value investing that they developed in the late 1990s prior to joining Artisan Partners in 2002.

We consider them among the best at running Europe, Australasia and Far East mandates: the US mutual fund Artisan International Value has a Morningstar Analyst Rating of Gold. Since its launch in 2011, this fund has also added value through stock selection in the US, leading to increased conviction in the US, leading to increased conviction in the global strategy.

JPM JapanBronze

JPM Japan EquityBronze

Don Yew

We have upgraded the funds' Morningstar Analyst Rating to Bronze from Neutral. This is primarily driven by our increased conviction in lead portfolio manager Nicholas Weindling, who has managed the UK-domiciled strategy since December 1 2007 and the Luxembourg version since September 2015.

He has consistently demonstrated a firm grasp of portfolio companies and has applied the quality-growth investment philosophy to generate excellent long-term returns. In addition, he is part of a team of 11 portfolio managers who are dedicated to supporting this strategy. This is one of the most experienced and stable teams among Japanese equity peers that we have seen.  

The information contained within is for educational and informational purposes ONLY. It is not intended nor should it be considered an invitation or inducement to buy or sell a security or securities noted within nor should it be viewed as a communication intended to persuade or incite you to buy or sell security or securities noted within. Any commentary provided is the opinion of the author and should not be considered a personalised recommendation. The information contained within should not be a person's sole basis for making an investment decision. Please contact your financial professional before making an investment decision.

Securities Mentioned in Article

Security NamePriceChange (%)Morningstar
Rating
Artisan Global Value I USD Acc22.89 USD-0.53
AXAWF Fram Global Conv F Cap EUR pf158.76 EUR-0.66
JPM Japan A Net Acc5.19 GBP1.02
JPM Japan Equity A (dist) USD41.33 USD0.59
Legg Mason WA US Core+ Bd A (G) USD Acc166.19 USD-0.54

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