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Rating:Morgan Stanley Taps Biggs for New International Fund Not Rated 3.0 Email Routing List Email & Route  Print Print
Friday, March 19, 1999

Morgan Stanley Taps Biggs for New International Fund

Reported by Jason Shank

Morgan Stanley has filed with the SEC to launch the Morgan Stanley Dean Witter International Fund. The Fund's advisor will be Morgan Stanley Dean Witter Advisors Inc., and its sub-advisor will be Morgan Stanley Dean Witter Investment Management (MSDWIM) Inc. The managers will use a "top-down" approach that emphasizes country and sector selection and weightings over individual stock selection.

The fund will offer A shares with a 5.25% up-front load, B shares with a 5.00% deferred load, and C shares with a 1.00% level load, with a 25 basis point 12b-1 fee for the A shares and 100 basis points 12b-1for the B and C shares.

Ann D. Thivierge and Barton M. Biggs, Chairman and Director of the MSDWIM since 1980 and a Managing Director of Morgan Stanley & Co. Incorporated since 1975, are the primary portfolio managers of the Fund. Ann Thivierge is a Managing Director of MSDWIM. She is a member of the MSDWIM Asset Allocation Committee, primarily representing the Total Funds Management Team since its inception in 1991. 

The fund's managers plan to invest the fund's assets within each country and/or sector based on its assigned weighting. Within each country, MSDWIM will try to match the performance of a broad local market index by investing in optimized baskets of common stocks and other equity securities. In most cases, the MSCI Index for that country will be used as the benchmark index.

In order to determine the investments of the fund, MSDWIM will first consider the countries represented in the Morgan Stanley Capital International EAFE (Europe, Australia and Far East) Index. MSCI EAFE countries include Australia, Japan, New Zealand, most nations in Western Europe, and the more developed nations of Asia, such as Hong Kong and Singapore.

MSDWIM then establishes the proportion or weighting for each country (eg., overweight, underweight or neutral) relative to the index for investment by the fund. MSDWIM may also choose to overweight or underweight particular sectors within each country or region. In making its determinations, it evaluates factors such as valuation, economic outlook, corporate earnings growth, inflation, liquidity and risk characteristics, investor sentiment, interest rates, and currency outlook.


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