Morningstar, Inc. named on January 3 its 2006 mutual fund managers of the year, picking managers who “not only posted impressive returns for the year, but also . . . must have a record of delivering outstanding long-term performance and of aligning their interests with shareholders’.” As it does every year since instituting the award in 1988, Morningstar uses its own research and evaluations by its fund analysts to pick winners in three different asset classes–domestic stock; international stock; and fixed income.

O. Mason Hawkins and Staley Cates were named domestic-stock fund managers of the year for their work with the Longleaf Partners Fund (LLPFX) and Longleaf Partners Small Cap (LLSCX). David Herro

Was named international-stock fund manager of the year for the Oakmark International (OAKIX) and Oakmark International Small Cap (OAKEX) funds. The Fixed-Income Fund Manager of the Year for 2006 is Jeffrey Gundlach of the TCW Total Return Bond (TGLMX) fund.

For more on the process and an analysis of the winners’ strategies, go to http://news.morningstar.com/article/article.asp?id=182492.