Vivek Kudva, Managing Director, Franklin Templeton Investments, India and CEEMEA, said:
“We are delighted to bring these three new funds to our clients in the Gulf region which further enhances our product offering here, bringing the total number of FTIF funds currently offered to 67.”
The new FTIF Franklin Gold and Precious Metals Fund seeks to achieve capital appreciation by investing at least 80% of its net assets in companies around the world that mine, process or deal in gold and other precious metals such as platinum, palladium and silver. The Fund’s secondary goal is to provide income for investors.
Based in California, U.S.A., Steve Land, Lead Portfolio Manager of the Fund and Vice President of the Franklin Equity Group commented, “We want to give investors a way to gain exposure to the diversification offered by investing in gold and precious metals. At Franklin Templeton, we have a large team of natural resource analysts focused on identifying potential investments that may provide good long-term growth. We have been investing in gold and precious metals since 1969 when Franklin Templeton launched the U.S.-based Franklin Gold and Precious Metals Fund. We now look forward to bringing our capabilities to investors on a more global format.”
The Fund’s management team scours the globe seeking investment opportunities within the precious metals sector. The team’s investment process is rooted in fundamental analysis, looking for the best trade-off between perceived risks and potential return. They search for companies with long-term revenue growth, superior profitability and strong balance sheets, as well as a sustainable and meaningful competitive advantage.
The FTIF Templeton European Corporate Bond Fund will aim to maximise total investment return through a combination of interest income and capital appreciation, whilst being consistent with Franklin Templeton Fixed Income Group’s prudent investment management. The Fund will invest primarily in investment-grade fixed or floating rate debt securities of European corporate issuers and/or non-European corporate issuers with a business presence in the European region. The base currency of the Fund is the Euro, and will principally invest in fixed income debt securities either denominated in Euros or, if denominated in another currency, hedged into Euros.
London-based David Zahn, lead portfolio manager of the Fund commented; “We’re excited to add this fund to our line-up of Templeton European fixed income funds.”
He added, “We still believe that there are good opportunities in the Euro corporate bond market given stabilising economic conditions, improved company fundamentals, and attractive valuations. We think Franklin Templeton is especially well positioned to take advantage of these opportunities given our extensive corporate and global bond credit research resources and our experienced portfolio management team.”
The fund management team believes that bottom-up security selection will be the most important driver of returns for the Templeton European Corporate Bond Fund. The management team employs in-depth fundamental credit research, which is combined with top-down macro analysis to construct a fund that has the potential to generate attractive risk-adjusted returns over a full market cycle. In addition, the fund is built around a diversified set of active management positions that should reduce the risk of poor performance from any single position.
The new FTIF Franklin Real Return Fund will seek to achieve total return that exceeds the U.S. inflation rate over an economic cycle. The Fund will generally invest a substantial portion of its assets in inflation-protected securities. The Fund also has the flexibility to invest in other sectors of the bond and stock markets to increase real return (total return less inflation) potential and offer greater portfolio diversification to investors.
Tony Coffey, a Vice-President for the Franklin Templeton Managed Investment Solutions and co-portfolio manager of the Fund commented, “For investors concerned about inflation protection, we have experience managing a similar strategy for U.S. based investors. The U.S.-registered Franklin Real Return Fund (a U.S. registered fund and not available to investors outside the U.S.), which now has a five-year track record, demonstrated that it can outperform inflation at relatively low volatility and this should provide a comparative approach for non-U.S. based investors. Kent Burns, co-portfolio manager and myself have extensive resources we can draw on from both the Franklin Templeton Fixed Income Group and Franklin Templeton Managed Investment Solutions team in managing this fund. Franklin Templeton began tactically investing in inflation linked bonds shortly after the U.S. Treasury first issued TIPS in 1997. We look forward to offering our expertise to a more global audience.”
The Fund’s management team seeks to add value through top-down economic analysis and bottom-up fundamental sector, security and issuer analysis. Additionally, they utilize robust quantitative and risk management tools. They evaluate inflation cycles, business cycles, yield curves, country risk and values between and within markets. Ultimately, the Fund allocates its assets among securities in various market sectors based on the managers’ assessment of changing economic, global market, industry, and issuer conditions.
Franklin Resources, Inc., is a global investment management organization operating as Franklin Templeton Investments. Franklin Templeton Investments provides global and domestic investment management solutions managed by its Franklin, Templeton, Mutual Series, Fiduciary Trust, Darby and Bissett investment teams. The San Mateo, CA-based company has more than 60 years of investment experience and over $586.8bn in assets under management as of March 31, 2010.
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