An Emerging Record

12/31/2004 12:00 am EST

Focus:

Walter Frank

CIO, MONEYLETTER

Former economic adviser to the Bank of New England and consultant to the US House Banking and Currency Committee, Walter Frank focuses on diversification through mutual funds. For his Top Pick, he looks at a lesser-known play on emerging markets.

"My top pick for 2005 is Driehaus Emerging Markets Growth (DREGX ). 2004 was a great year for emerging markets and we believe that 2005 will continue the run. Emerging markets have two developments going for them now. First, as a result of the rise in commodity prices, emerging markets find themselves in a vastly improved financial situation. We are no longer talking of your father’s thin, manipulated markets, nor banana republics.

"In addition, China’s insatiable appetite for commodities, which will continue, promises vigorous demand for emerging markets’ exports. Why Driehaus? Just look at the record. The manager of this fund has compiled an excellent record in up and down markets. He has avoided the land mines when they pop up, as they inevitably will. The fund is not for everyone. Emerging markets involve risk, but for anyone who can live with the ride, this is a fund that will prove rewarding."

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