For all its claims to have some of the sharpest portfolio managers and analysts in the mutual fund industry--people who research companies inside and out--Janus was fooled by Enron's accounting scheme of hiding billions of dollars in debt and inflated profits, just like everyone else, the Denver Post reports.
Janus portfolio managers began buying Enron in January 1999, when share prices were less than $40. By March 2000, when the stock peaked at about $80, some portfolio managers unloaded their holdings to take profits, but a number of them clung to Enron throughout 2001, notwithstanding the stock beginning to plummet ahead of the company's collapse on Nov. 28, 2001. Even in early November 2001, Janus still held 15 million shares, and that September, as questions about Enron's solvency began to rise, Janus's position was as high as 41 million shares.
"Although Janus didn't escape the entire decline of Enron's stock value, as a firm we came out about neutral," admitted Janus spokesman Blair Johnson.
The staff of Money Management Executive ("MME") has prepared these capsule summaries based on reports published by the news sources to which they are attributed. Those news sources are not associated with MME, and have not prepared, sponsored, endorsed, or approved these summaries.