Investment managers remain bullish on large-cap growth funds despite a market performance that has favored value over the last five years or so, according to a quarterly poll conducted by Russell Investment Group.
The poll, Russell’s Investment Manager Outlook, recorded the opinions of 101 senior level investment decision makers at U.S. large- and small-cap equity managers, and found that 70% of U.S. investment managers are optimistic that large-cap growth stocks will perform well over the next year.
According to the report, the two Russell indexes most reflecting large-cap growth–the Russell 1000 Growth Index and the Russell Top 2000 Growth Index–were the two lowest performing funds in the Russell index family over the first two months in 2006.
Additionally, the 10-year annualized total returns for the Russell value and growth indexes at each market capitalization level showed a 4% differential favoring value at each level.
Only 8% of managers surveyed felt the market was overvalued. Twenty-four percent felt it was undervalued.
“Managers feel that the growth segment of the market is not fairly valued,” said Randy Lert, Russell’s chief portfolio strategist. “On average, the belief is that we’ve had this very long value run, and sort of a mid-cap/small-cap value run on top of it all. [The belief is] that the large-cap growth sector has lagged and it’s undervalued compared to the rest of the market. I think managers think that the value run has sort of has it’s day.”
According to Lert, many people have been perplexed by “a number of aspects in the market over the last year, one of which is why value has continued to do so well. In general the manager community has not been completely align with what’s been going on in the market.”