April 24, 2018, 1:06 pm
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1 Philippine Peso = 0.07044 UAE Dirham
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1 Philippine Peso = 0.89893 Gambian Dalasi
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1 Philippine Peso = 0.1407 Guatemala Quetzal
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1 Philippine Peso = 25.29728 Myanmar Kyat
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1 Philippine Peso = 1 Philippine Peso
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1 Philippine Peso = 0.02526 Singapore Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.01369 St Helena Pound
1 Philippine Peso = 0.42589 Slovak Koruna
1 Philippine Peso = 146.33679 Sierra Leone Leone
1 Philippine Peso = 10.79785 Somali Shilling
1 Philippine Peso = 382.92676 Sao Tome Dobra
1 Philippine Peso = 0.16782 El Salvador Colon
1 Philippine Peso = 9.87687 Syrian Pound
1 Philippine Peso = 0.2317 Swaziland Lilageni
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1 Philippine Peso = 0.04287 Tongan paʻanga
1 Philippine Peso = 0.07793 Turkish Lira
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1 Philippine Peso = 0.56552 Taiwan Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 43.65171 Tanzanian Shilling
1 Philippine Peso = 0.50153 Ukraine Hryvnia
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1 Philippine Peso = 0.01918 United States Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.54066 Uruguayan New Peso
1 Philippine Peso = 154.48792 Uzbekistan Sum
1 Philippine Peso = 1138.30075 Venezuelan Bolivar
1 Philippine Peso = 436.67051 Vietnam Dong
1 Philippine Peso = 2.02071 Vanuatu Vatu
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1 Philippine Peso = 10.24242 CFA Franc (BEAC)
1 Philippine Peso = 0.05178 East Caribbean Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 10.24242 CFA Franc (BCEAO)
1 Philippine Peso = 1.85386 Pacific Franc
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1 Philippine Peso = 0.23169 South African Rand
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1 Philippine Peso = 6.94093 Zimbabwe dollar

Active fund management is a fool’s errand

By James Saft

Institutions do better than individuals at active fund management, but given that both come out losers the underlying message is that picking stocks and bonds is a game neither group should play.

The vast majority of all mutual fund and institutional accounts failed to keep pace with their benchmarks over the past decade, according to a new report from S&P Dow Jones Indices examining the impact of fees. 

And while institutional accounts, owned by large and deep-pocketed investors with formal selection processes, usually performed better than their mutual fund peers, the difference is almost always not because their managers are better. Instead, institutions are better at negotiating lower fees.

In other words, and we’ve learned this before, active fund management is a fool’s errand. Institutional accounts did better, but it was all a little like the old joke in which the man frequents a restaurant because “the food is terrible, but the portions are large.”

Unless you are an active mutual fund investor, in which case your terrible food is a bit more expensive.

The report examined the impact of fees on mutual fund and institutional account performance over the past decade, using data from the University of Chicago and eVestment Alliance.

“Across various categories within the domestic equity space, the overwhelming majority of active managers, both retail and institutional, lagged their respective benchmarks,” according to the report.

“Overall findings suggest that on a gross- or net-of-fees basis, the US equity space poses meaningful challenges for active managers to overcome.”

“Meaningful challenge” is somewhere between kind and a massive understatement.

Among large-cap equity mandates benchmarked to the S&P 500, 84.60 percent of mutual funds underperformed the market over 10 years after fees are deducted, as well as 79.58 percent of institutional accounts. Looking at the same category gross of fees mutual funds bested institutions slightly, in that only 68.16 percent of them failed to match market return over 10 years, as compared to 69.20 percent of institutional accounts.

This illustrates both that institutions are better positioned to drive a hard bargain, but for a service which is effectively giving them what they deserve good and hard.

Wait, I can almost hear the active managers say, “you are cherry-picking data”.

“If only,” I can only ruefully reply.

Net of fees 95 percent of large-cap growth mutual funds and 90 percent of institutional accounts lagged. The same statistics for mid-cap core funds were 98 and 95 percent, respectively. My sense of fairness impels me to tell you that in only one of the 17 categories of domestic equities did active mutual funds outperform, and that is large-cap value funds, where only 47 percent failed to keep pace with their benchmark, gross of fees. Take fees into account, of course, and that number grows to 64 percent. - Reuters
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