Bill Miller, portfolio manager of the Legg Mason Value Trust Fund hailed for beating the S&P 500 for 15 years, ended that streak by delivering the worst performance among his peers, Bloomberg reports. A multi-cap value fund, Value Trust rose a scant 5.9% in 2006, compared to the S&P 500’s 15.8% rise.
Certainly, however, Miller should be recognized as one of the best-performing managers of his generation, delivering an average return of 15.7% between 1991 and 2005, compared with the S&P 500’s annual 11.8% rise.
“It still would be hard not to see Miller as one of the best investment managers of his generation,” said Christine Benz, director of fund analysis at Morningstar. “Many of the best managers run into periods of weakness.”
Investors, certainly, responded to Miller’s weakened performance last year, investing $289 million in Miller’s fund, down 78% from the $1.34 billion they invested in 2005, according to data from Financial Research Corp.
But Miller was not the only manager with boasting rights to a winning streak who faltered in 2006. Ronald Muhlenkamp of the Muhlenkamp Fund returned 4.1%. Manu Daftary of the Quaker Strategic Growth Fund, who had the second-longest streak after Miller, delivered a 5.1% return.
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