Morningstar announced Tuesday its 2015 U.S. Fund Manager of the Year award winners, with managers from Brown Capital Management, American Funds, PIMCO and Vanguard being honored.
The 2015 awards marks the 29th year Morningstar has bestowed the honor on the managers that the Chicago-based fund research firm says deliver impressive performance, excellent long-term risk-adjusted returns, and exhibit “tremendous skill” in their field.
Each year, Morningstar selects leaders in five categories: domestic stock, international stock, fixed income, allocation and alternatives. Check out this year’s full list of nominees in Top 14 Fund Managers of 2015: Morningstar.
Here are Morningstar’s picks for the 2015 Fund Manager of the Year award:
The team from Brown Capital Management Small Company (BCSIX) — Keith Lee, Robert Hall, Kempton Ingersol, Damien Davis, and Andrew Fones — were honored in this category for employing “a unique and patient strategy, buying companies that earn $250 million or less in revenue at the time of initial investment and ‘save lives, time, money, or headaches,’” according to Morningstar.
Keith Lee and Robert Hall have led Brown Capital Management Small Company since the fund’s inception in 1992. The fund has a Morningstar Analyst Rating of Gold, the company’s highest Medalist rating.
In 2015, the top 10 contributors to performance have been in the portfolio for an average of nine years.
“Since we launched the Morningstar Analyst Rating in 2011, the fund has carried a Gold rating,” said Jon Hale, Morningstar’s director of manager research, North America. “In a year when stocks struggled to stay positive, the fund gained 8.8% in 2015, while its typical small-growth fund peer lost 2.4%. The fund ranked in the top percentile over the trailing one-, three-, five-, and 10-year periods.”
Robert Lovelace — who has been on the fund for 15 years and is its longest-tenured manager, and serves as the fund’s principal investment officer — along with the team at the helm of the American Funds New Perspective (ANWPX), won top honors in this category.
American Funds New Perspective has a Gold Analyst Rating and Positive scores for all five pillars of the Analyst Rating — Process, Performance, People, Parent and Price, Morningstar says.
At $60 billion in assets, the fund is the second largest in the world-stock category, and its 5.3% gain in 2015 beat the MSCI All Country World Index by 7.7 percentage points, landing in the category’s top decile.
The fund has also placed in its peer group’s top half in each of the past 10 calendar years.
“The team’s strong stock selection has continually led performance at this fund. The top three holdings in 2015 — Novo Nordisk, Amazon.com and Regeneron Pharmaceuticals — were up 40%, 118%, and 32%, respectively, last year,” Hale said. Fixed Income