Last year the stock market did much better than expected — and so did some active managers, who had to beat the results of some aggressive benchmarks.
To perform well, they needed to be ready for the unexpected, said Tim Clift, chief investment strategist for Envestnet | PMC, who discussed why finalists for the 16th annual Asset Manager and Strategist of the Year Awards were selected out of thousands on the Envestnet platform of active managers.
To make it to the initial step of judging, managers had to have a minimum of $200 million in assets and three years of experience. Plus, the strategy must be open to new investors and available on the Envestnet platform.
The Envestnet|PMC & Investment Advisor Asset Manager and Strategist of the Year Awards recognize those active managers in different asset classes who have beaten the benchmarks, shown solid performance throughout the years and are best-in-breed in their respective class.
As in past years, the selection committee includes Envestnet|PMC executives and Investment Advisor editors, who choose the top managers from seven asset classes/categories, as well as a manager of the year.
Finalists and winners are picked from those managers that Envestnet analysts have diligently researched, and in most cases have met with, as well as combed through using performance and governance factors. The manager of the year is selected from the winners of all seven categories.
The winners will be announced in June and showcased in the July issue of Investment Advisor magazine. The finalists announced Wednesday are:
Large Cap Equity (two awards) • The Alley Co. — Alley Dividend Portfolio • Brown Advisory — Large Cap Growth • Dana Investment Advisors — Large Cap Equity • Parnassus Investments — Core Equity Fund
Mid Cap, Small Cap and SMID (two awards) • EARNEST Partners — Mid Cap Core • Fuller & Thaler Asset Management — Behavioral Small-Cap Equity • The London Co. — SMID Managed Account Strategy • Wells Fargo Asset Management — Special Mid Cap Value
Global, International and Emerging Market • ClearBridge Investments — International Growth ADR SMA • Columbia Threadneedle Investments — Columbia Emerging Markets Fund • Epoch Investment Partners — Epoch Non-US ADR Strategy
Fixed Income • GW&K Investment Management — Enhanced Core Bond Strategy • T. Rowe Price — Bank Loan
Impact • Boston Common Asset Management — Boston Common International Equity • Breckinridge Capital Advisors — Intermediate Sustainable Tax Efficient SMA
Liquid Alternatives • BlackRock — BlackRock Strategic Income Opportunities Fund • Eaton Vance — Global Macro Absolute Return Strategy
Strategist • Capital Group — American Funds Core Models • New Frontier Advisors — New Frontier Global Strategic ETF Portfolios
A Tricky Market Climate
Although both 2018 and 2019 stock markets were up years, Clift said, “2019 was up dramatically, and unexpectedly. A lot of folks going into 2019 were worried about a recession and were potentially positioning portfolios for a down market, and that didn’t happen,” he said in an interview.