The Boston Globe
thinks Nick Thakore
's star shone the most brightly in 2009,
the manager of Putnam
fund as the recipient for its ninth annual 'Boston Capital Fund Manager of the Year' award, on Tuesday.
Thakore, as any Putnam watcher knows, is part of a long list of Fidelity
alums that have joined Putnam since Bob Reynolds
took over as CEO in the summer of 2008. Thakore joined Putnam in November last year from RiverSource Investments
. He previously worked at Fidelity for nine years.
Thakore's Voyager fund has posted a 65.6 percent gain this year through the end of last week, skyrocketing past the Russell 1000 Growth Index -- a major investment benchmark for those funds -- which is up 39.3 percent this year.
While Voyager is seeing blissful returns this year, it has had a rough decade plagued by dismal losses and shareholder defections that dropped its assets from $46 billion around 2000 all the way down to today's $3.5 billion.
As The Globe's Steven Syre sees it, Thakore has played an instrumental role in the fund's recovery.
Thakore attributed the fund's success this year to individual stock performances, especially shares of cyclical growth companies that stand to benefit from the improving economy.
"I thought it was the best stock-picking environment I ever saw," stated Thakore. "People were hesitant to buy stocks like Aflac Inc. and CBS Corp. when they were way down and out. I think I took more advantage of that."
Previous award honorees include Will Danoff, Joel Tillinghast, and Bob Litterst from Fidelity; Dan Fuss of Loomis Sayles & Co.; Dan Rice of BlackRock Advisors; and Maura Shaughnessy of MFS Investment Management. Ken Heebner of Capital Growth & Management holds the distinction of winning twice.
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