Poor market performance coupled with increased Securities and Exchange Commission vigilance over performance advertising has prompted some fund companies to advertise their funds' relative performance instead of absolute returns, according to fund advertising and marketing executives.

OppenheimerFunds of New York opted to go that route with its Global Fund, said Bruce Dunbar, vice president of brand marketing for the firm. Last year the firm advertised the fund's one-, five- and 10-year returns but decided to change the ad at the beginning of this month after the fund's performance began to fall off this year, Dunbar said. The fund lost 21 percent in the first quarter of this year.

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