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Thursday, September 14, 2006

Ralph Parks May Go Global ... But Not Yet

by: Neil Anderson, Managing Editor

Ralph Parks has got an investment system he's sure of, and he hopes to be able to apply it to the whole world. In November he founded his own investment advisor, Ralph Parks Investment Group, and last month the company launched its first mutual fund, the Ralph Parks Cyclical Equity Fund (RPCEX). In an interview with MFWire.com, Parks confided that the firm might be ready to launch a global version of the fund within a year.

According to Parks, who serves as the fund's portfolio manager, the RPCEX Fund is the first cyclical fund for the entire market (there are cyclical sector funds). Parks describes the difference as "identifying long-term patterns" using his proprietary formulas and charts sold by AIQ (the president of which is on Ralph Parks' board of directors). Sometimes, Parks said, the RPCEX will be all short, and sometimes it will be all long, depending on the conditions.

Parks tracks 17,000 by computer every week, and so far, his method seems to be working. He claims a 16.68 percent annualized return for the past decade. So far, the fund claims about $10 million in assets under management, and the firm also offers separately managed accounts, governed by the same investing strategy and managed by executive vice president Gina M. Griffo.

Griffo and Parks worked together at Smith Barney for seven or eight years, perfecting the system.

Applying the system to global equity markets will "take a little bit of time", Parks admits, but he claims to have research done for 20 of the 45 or so markets prepared. He estimates that preparations for such a global fund could be ready within six months to a year. And there may be other funds.

"We have considered doing individual countries, too," Griffo added.

According to the fund's prospectus, its net annual operating expenses are 315 basis points. Aquarius Fund Distributors, LLC of Omaha, Nebraska distributes the fund. Gemini Fund Services, LLC serves as the fund's administrator, accountant, and transfer agent, while Bank of New York is the fund's custodian. 

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