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Mairs & Power’s Frels, Henneman Named Manager of the Year

William Frels and Mark Henneman, who run the $2.5 billion Mairs & Power Growth Fund, were named domestic stock-fund managers of the year by Morningstar Inc.

The top honor for international stock funds went to the $1.3 billion Virtus Foreign Opportunities Fund and the $6.8 billion Virtus Emerging Markets Opportunities Fund, both run by Rajiv Jain, Chicago-based Morningstar said in a statement today. The fixed-income winner was Mark Kiesel, manager of the $10.2 billion Pimco Investment Grade Corporate Bond Fund.

The six-member team that runs the $1.8 billion TFS Market Neutral Fund won in the alternatives category. David Giroux of the $13.7 billion T. Rowe Price Capital Appreciation Fund was named allocation fund manager of the year. Both are new categories for the research firm’s awards.

The Mairs & Power Growth Fund returned an average of 5.6 percent annually over the past five years, better than 89 percent of peers, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Last year it returned 22 percent, topping 95 percent of rivals. Of the fund’s largest 25 holdings, 18 were bought in the 1990s and 17 have been in the portfolio for at least 10 years, Morningstar said in the statement.

Virtus Emerging Markets Opportunities Fund gained 3.8 percent annually for the past five years, better than 94 percent of competitors. The fund returned 20 percent in 2012, besting 58 percent of peers, according to the data.

Kiesel’s Pimco fund outperformed 91 percent of similar funds over the past five years, returning 10 percent annually. The fund, which topped 77 percent of rivals in 2012, had 17 percent of its money in bank debt as of Sept. 30.

Market Neutral

TFS Market Neutral Fund gained 4.5 percent annually for the past five years, better than 97 percent of peers. The team’s 7.8 return last year topped 84 percent of rivals, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Morningstar defines alternative investments as those that don’t fit neatly into traditional stock or fixed-income categories.

T. Rowe Price Capital Appreciation gained 6 percent a year for the past five years, ahead of 95 percent of rivals. Its largest holding was Waltham, Massachusetts-based Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc. as of Sept. 30, the data show. Giroux’s 15 percent return in 2012 beat 82 percent of the competition.

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