Funds fail to make top grade

A van Eyk survey of Australia's retail fund managers found none was worthy to receive its top rating of AA. Van Eyk assessed 40 equity funds, responsible for $133 billion of investors' money, on performance, investment style and size. Less than half of the funds were rated A. Last year, Barclays Global Investors and Schroders were rated AA but both were downgraded to A this year. Merrill Lynch, AXA-Alliance and Credit Suisse were all assessed as “non investment grade” in the latest survey. The largest manager, Commonwealth Bank/Colonial First State, had its low-risk neutral fund excluded from the survey after being adjudged too inactive while its Imputation fund managed only a B rating.
Perpetual's value fund was given an A rating and deemed by van Eyk to have the highest quality overall. BT Financial Group improved from a B rating in the last survey to an A this time round.

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