WCM Focused: A Favorite for International Growth

03/21/2017 2:50 am EST

Focus: FUNDS

Robert Carlson

Editor, Retirement Watch

One fund that’s been earning strong returns without making headlines is WCM Focused International Growth (WCMRX), notes fund expert Robert Carlson, editor Retirement Watch.

The strong dollar and a bear market in health care stocks hurt the fund for a while in late 2016, but it has been recovering.

WCMRX looks for great businesses that seem likely to continue to grow at high rates. Of course, the fund’s managers analyze a company’s fundamentals and management.

But they also look for companies that benefit from key long-term trends, such as changing demographics, the expanding middle class, increased use of technology and more.

In addition, the fund seeks companies that have some protection for their businesses, whether that protection is regulatory or some competitive advantage.

The result is that only a few companies make it into the fund. Only 32 stocks are in the fund, and the 10 largest positions make up 39% of the fund. The fund also tends to be concentrated in technology, health care, consumer cyclical and consumer defensive industries.

It invests globally. It’s about 52% in Europe, 26% in Asia and 22% in the Americas. About 20% of the fund is in emerging markets.  Top holdings are Taiwan Semiconductor (TSM), Reckitt Benckiser (RBGLY), Chubb (CB), CSL (Australia: CSL) and Nestle (NSRGY).

WCMRX returned 3.81% in the last four weeks and 6.66% for the year to date. It is up 13.09% over the last 12 months and remains a buy in our Sector Portfolio.

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