NU Online News Service, June 25, 10:15 a.m. – Standard & Poor’s, New York, says it is removing its select fund designation from Citizens Emerging Growth Fund (WAEGX).

S&P says it based its move primarily on the fund company’s decision to terminate its subadvisory relationship with Seneca Capital Management, San Francisco, its subadvisor since the fund’s inception.

The changes to the portfolio will be reflected by the new management team’s investment approach and philosophy but will not change the fund’s investment objectives, S&P says.

Citizens decided to terminate the subadvisory relationship with Seneca in early April, bringing the management of the fund inside the company, S&P notes.

In replacing the Seneca group, Citizen Funds named Jeffrey Schappe its director of research, portfolio manager and growth equity team leader.

Schappe is supported by a group of six senior and junior analysts, one manager of social research and two traders. Standard & Poor’s notes that although the experience of Schappe and senior equity analyst Robert Barringer spans more than 14 years, the entire team has tenure at Citizens of less than two years.

Also a factor in S&P’s decision was the fund company’s modification of the risk profile of the fund. The fund will still remain an aggressive mid-cap growth fund but will be more risk-aware by limiting sector exposures, S&P says.

An S&P Select Fund designation is based not only on performance but also on management quality, S&P says.