Where Are the Female Portfolio Managers?
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Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Where Are the Female Portfolio Managers?

The vast majority of mutual fund PMs are men, and the ratio is more skewed than in professions like law and medicine.

Laura Lutton, Morningstar's director of manager research for equity strategies in North America, reports that, according to the mutual fund ratings giant's data, 9.4 percent (699) of the roughly 7,700 U.S. open-end mutual fund PMs are women. 2.5 percent of all the funds, and 1.9 percent of total fund assets under management, are PMed solely by women; that compares to 77.9 percent of funds (and 74.0 percent of AUM) PMed solely by men, and 19.6 percent of funds (and 24.1 percent of AUM) PMed by mixed-gender teams. By comparison, M* notes, women represent more than 25 percent of financial advisors, 37 percent of doctors, 33 percent of lawyers, and 63 percent of accountants and auditors.

The report offers a host of data points about men and women as PMs, including: a ranking of the top 20 mutual fund companies (Dodge & Cox had the highest ratio, 25.0 percent, of female PMs; Lord Abbett had the lowest, 3.5 percent); and performance data on equity, fixed-income, allocation, and alternative funds PMed by women only, men only, and by teams that include both women and men. The upshot, Morningstar found, is that "women's returns are similar to men's even though women tend to manage pricier funds in niche areas," yet "mixed-gender teams provided the best results."

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