Bill Gross may be getting the ultimate vote of confidence from none other than Bill Gross.
The majority of money gathered by Gross’s new fund at Janus Capital Group Inc. came from the same Morgan Stanley brokerage where his personal financial adviser works, according to The Wall Street Journal. The wealth-management office in La Jolla, California, routed about $700 million to Gross’s fund in October and November, the newspaper said Wednesday, citing confidential brokerage data viewed by executives. The report didn’t say how much of the money came from Gross himself.
Gross has a history of putting his own money into the funds he manages, a move that can be seen as a vote of confidence in his strategy and help attract bigger investors. The Janus Global Unconstrained Bond Fund, which Gross has run since Oct. 6, expanded to $1.2 billion in assets as of Nov. 28, from $13 million before he joined Janus, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
“It’s nothing but a positive across the board if it’s actually his money,” Joshua Emanuel, chief investment officer at Elements Financial Group in Irvine, California, said in a telephone interview. “What every investor should want to see from every portfolio manager is the manager putting their own assets in the product.”
Investors could also benefit from a stable asset base, he said.
“The last person to fire the manager is the manager himself — everybody’s going to fire Bill before Bill fires himself and pulls his own money out of the fund,” said Emanuel, whose investments include Pimco funds. “It gives you more confidence that it’s not hot money, that if Bill has a tough first year in the fund, the assets aren’t going to flow out.”
Steven Shapiro, a spokesman for Janus with Communications Strategy Group, didn’t return e-mails seeking comment. Margaret Draper, a spokeswoman for New York-based Morgan Stanley, declined to comment on the report.
Gross ran the world’s biggest bond fund, the $143.4 billion Pimco Total Return Fund, at Pacific Investment Management Co., the $1.87 trillion firm he co-founded in 1971, before abruptly departing for Denver-based Janus on Sept. 26. As of March 31, he had more than $1 million invested in that fund, according to a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.