Julius Baer Investment Management said on Wednesday that it plans to launch the Julius Baer International Equity Fund II, a new no-load fund that will seek long-term growth of capital by investing in shares of mid- and large-capitalization companies internationally.

JBIM also said it had closed its Julius Baer International Equity Fund to new investors effective May 4, 2005. The fund will, however, still remain open to existing shareholders and shareholders who invest through existing 401(k) programs.

Rudolph-Riad Younes and Richard Pell, who already co-manage the Julius Baer International Equity Fund, will also be in charge of the new Julius Baer International Equity Fund II.

"While we are pleased the [Julius Baer International Equity Fund] has attracted so much interest, continued large inflows could eventually impair our ability to maintain performance integrity and abide by our stated investment objectives. At this time, the responsible action is to close this specific fund to new investors while still making the same basic investment strategy and the talents of the same investment management team available to investors through this new fund," said Tony Williams, Julius Baer Investment Management CEO.

Total assets in the Julius Baer International Equity Fund stood at $12.1 billion at the end of March.

"Interest in international markets among U.S. investors continues to grow," said Riad Younes. "Our approach to international equity investing has not changed and we are committed to delivering superior, risk-adjusted returns for our shareholders."

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