BOSTON (Reuters) - One of the mutual fund industry’s oldest funds, run by one of its most enduring fund managers, Kenneth Heebner, went out of business last week, when Natixis Global Asset Management liquidated its CGM Advisor Targeted Equity Fund.
“On February 17, 2016, the CGM Advisor Targeted Equity Fund (the “Fund”) was liquidated. The fund no longer exists, and as a result, shares of the fund are no longer available for purchase or exchange,” Natixis said in a Securities and Exchange Commission filing.
So came the unceremonious end for a once-vaunted portfolio that came to life in 1968 as the New England Growth Fund, overseen for most of years by Heebner, a contrarian investor who scored some of the industry’s biggest gains and losses. Heebner still runs Capital Growth Management Funds from Boston.
“This is a loss of an oldie,” Jeff Tjornehoj, head of Americas research for Lipper, said on Tuesday. “There are not many funds that approach their 50th anniversary and drop dead just before it.”
Natixis said it decided to shut the fund because it no longer has an ownership stake in Heebner’s CGM Funds, but industry analysts said performance may have also played a role in the fund’s demise. CGM Funds had been a Natixis affiliate since 1993 and it was sold mainly by financial advisers.
At its end, it had $363 million in assets, dramatically less than the $1.02 billion it had at its peak in February 2010. It ended 2015 with a 3.3 percent loss, lagging 79 percent of its peers over the last 12 months.
Over the last five years it lagged 99 percent of other large cap core funds, data from Lipper, a Thomson Reuters company, show.
Heebner still runs the CGM Focus Fund, which now oversees $829 million, down from $10.3 billion in 2008. He is known for placing concentrated bets and delivering both stellar performance and dramatic losses for investors.
“He’s had years of terrific performance but there is just so much volatility associated with his funds,” Tjornehoj said.
Late last year, the CGM Advisor Targeted Equity Fund was invested in only 18 stocks with the bulk in homebuilders including D.R. Horton , Lennar Homes and Toll Brothers. Lennar and Toll Brothers are each nursing double-digit losses over the last 12 months.
The portfolio also owned Google, now called Alphabet Inc., which is up 32 percent over the last 12 months.
Reporting by Svea Herbst-Bayliss; Editing by Steve Orlofsky
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