Odd Lots, November 18, 1999
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Thursday, November 18, 1999

Odd Lots, November 18, 1999

No free names
From The Wall Street Journal
The S&P 500 Index Fund, expected to be launched Wednesday by a Culver City, CA, initially was to also have either "free" or "no fee" in its name, reflecting the fund manager's intention to bear all expenses. But as one would expect the SEC objected, and loudly. The SEC's concern stemmed from the fact that the index fund does incur expenses that could be charged to investors in the future. While plans to pay the fees indefinitely, it technically could change the no-fee stance within a few years.

Putnam continues to lose bond money
From The Boston Herald
Putnam's woes continue to drop the mutual fund giant in the fund ranks. Its sales in 1999 have dropped it from second most new sales in the industry a few years ago to number eleven today. Its bond sales are even worse -- according to the Herald, only one out of 349 companies is worse in new sales. The Boston company is adding to its wholesaler staff in an attempt to get brokers back into its funds, but it admits that sales force size has been another problem, and it has fallen behind its rivals.

China fund managers optimistic
From SmartMoney
The news that China will enter the WTO has many stocks that trade in Chinese companies up sharply, with China fund managers excited about the good news as well. Managers point to the small effect of China's economy so far on the Asian regional index, with almost unlimited upside potential. A few still remain cautious about the unsettled nature of the region, stressing that almost anything could happen in the next five years, but for most, the WTO news is the biggest cause for celebration in their portfolios' lives.

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