Fitch Maintains UBS US Large Cap Select Growth SICAV's FQR 'Under Review'
NEW YORK & LONDON -- May 21, 2013
Fitch Ratings maintains its Under Review status for the 'Strong' rating
assigned to UBS US Large Cap Select Growth SICAV. The fund is managed by UBS
Global Asset Management (UBS GAM).
The fund has suffered yet additional staff turnover in its US Large Cap Growth
team following the departure of the previous lead portfolio manager (PM),
Lawrence Kemp, in late-2012. During March of 2013, Sam Console (then co-PM of
the fund and analyst covering consumer industry) as well as Wendy Nickerson
(energy analyst) left the team for external opportunities.
In response, UBS GAM implemented certain changes to its team management
policies in order to support stability of the remaining team of six. UBS GAM
is also actively recruiting to fill the vacant roles with senior and
experienced analysts. UBS GAM has also reallocated coverage of existing
industries to remaining team members until appropriate new hires are placed.
UBS GAM does not expect further departures following these changes, and has
indicated the investment process remains intact.
Consistent with its rating criteria, Fitch maintains its 'under review' status
of the fund's 'Strong' rating. Fitch expects to resolve the 'under review'
status of the fund after an additional six month period. Fitch will closely
monitor the fund during this period to determine if the capacity of the fund
to achieve its objectives and outperform peers is structurally modified and
if, as a result, any change to its current rating opinion on the fund is
Fitch will monitor the status of the fund across three key areas: first, the
stability of the investment team; second, the stability of the fund in terms
of style; and third, its ability to maintain its performance track record. A
material deterioration in any of these areas could lead Fitch to consider
downgrading the fund. However, the agency continues to believe that the fund
is 'Strong' overall at this time.
The departure of the three staff over the past six months represents a loss of
experience for the company and the fund. However, Fitch gives credit to the
team-based approach to managing the fund and the involvement of other senior
analysts in the day-to-day decision making process. The fund remains managed
by Peter Bye who has over 19 years of investment experience and overseen by
Paul Graham, managing director and head of Growth Equities.
Launched in October 2004, the UBS US Large Cap Select Growth SICAV seeks to
outperform the Russell 1000 Growth index by 300bps per annum over the course
of a full market cycle. It earned Lipper Leader Scores for Consistent Return
of four over three years and five over five years as of end-October 2012, as
measured relative to the Lipper Global Equity US category.
UBS Global Asset Management is a division of UBS AG, a large publicly traded
financial institution rated 'A'/Stable/'F1' by Fitch. UBS Global Asset
Management managed $632 billion in assets under management as of March 31,
2013, of which USD189 billion constituted equity strategies and USD15.6
billion constituted the Large-Cap Equity Growth strategy to which the fund
Fitch's Fund Quality Ratings combine Fitch's experience in qualitative fund
analysis with rankings and performance data from Lipper, a Thomson Reuters
company. Fitch's Fund Quality Ratings offer an independent, forward-looking
assessment of a fund's key performance and risk attributes and consistency of
longer-term returns, relative to peer group or benchmarks. The ratings focus
on the fund manager's investment process, key fund performance drivers, risk
management, and the quality of the fund's operational infrastructure.
For more information, please see www.fitchspotlight.com/FQR.
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Applicable Criteria and Related Research:
--'Fund Quality Rating Criteria', dated Sept. 19, 2011.
Applicable Criteria and Related Research:
Fund Quality Ratings Criteria: Assessing Funds -- Investment Processes and
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Yuriy Layvand, CFA, +1 212-908-9191
Fitch Ratings, Inc.
One State Street Plaza
New York, NY 10004
Alastair Sewell, +44 20 3530 1147
Ian Rasmussen, +1 212-908-0232
Brian Bertsch, +1 212-908-0549
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