Value funds definitely were successful in attracting assets throughout much of last year. According to Lipper, value funds collectively soaked in $55.6 billion through November of 2001, while funds that invest with a growth discipline lost $17 billion over the same period. Core funds which tend to utilize both styles attracted just $3.8 billion in new money.

"Whether investors were scared and cautiously moving into value funds last year, or whether they were diving into value funds because that's where the performance action was, is anyone's guess," said Don Cassidy, senior research analyst at Lipper. Either way, "Dodge & Cox was playing in the right sandbox," he said.

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