The Fund invests primarily in equity securities, principally common and preferred stocks, of companies with market capitalizations that fall within the range of the Russell 1000® Value Index. As of December 31, 2014, the range of the Index was $275 million to $391.5 billion, but it is expected to change frequently.
The Subadviser employs a fundamental, bottom-up research driven approach to identify companies for investment by the Fund. The Subadviser focuses on those companies that it believes have higher quality businesses that are undervalued by the market relative to what the Subadviser believes to be their fair value. The Subadviser also looks for one or more catalysts that may help the company realize that fair value.
The Subadviser seeks to identify higher quality companies by focusing on the following attributes:
The Subadviser then assesses the attractiveness of the valuation of those higher quality companies by analyzing a variety of valuation metrics, such as cash flow return on enterprise value, price-to-earnings, sales and free cash flow ratios, and break-up values, among others. The Subadviser then looks for potential catalysts for the company's business that could help unlock what the Subadviser believes is the company's true value, including:
The Subadviser may sell a holding if the value potential is realized, if warning signals emerge of fundamental deterioration, or if the valuation is no longer compelling relative to other investment opportunities.
Under normal market conditions, the Fund expects to invest in approximately 35-45 companies with at least 80% of its net assets, plus borrowings for investment purposes, in a diversified portfolio of large cap equity securities. The Fund may invest up to 20% of its total assets in the securities of foreign issuers, including issuers located or doing business in emerging markets.
Market and issuer risk: Securities markets are volatile and can decline significantly in response to adverse market, economic, political or regulatory developments, which may lower the value of securities held by the Fund, sometimes rapidly or unpredictably. Additionally, an adverse event, such as an unfavorable earnings report, may depress the value of a particular issuer's stock.
Value style risk: Over time, a value oriented investing style may go in and out of favor, which may cause the Fund to underperform other equity funds that use different investing styles.
Selection risk: The Subadviser's judgment about the attractiveness, value and potential appreciation of a particular security may be incorrect.
Large cap risk: Large cap stocks may fall out of favor relative to small or mid cap stocks, which may cause the Fund to underperform other equity funds that focus on small or mid cap stocks.
Foreign securities risk: Because the Fund may invest in securities of foreign issuers, an investment in the Fund is subject to special risks in addition to those of U.S. securities. These risks include heightened political and economic risks, greater volatility, currency fluctuations, higher transaction costs, delayed settlement, possible foreign controls on investment, possible sanctions by governmental bodies of other countries and less stringent investor protection and disclosure standards of foreign markets. Foreign securities are sometimes less liquid and harder to value than securities of U.S. issuers. These risks are more significant for issuers in emerging market countries. Global economies and financial markets are becoming increasingly interconnected, and conditions and events in one country, region or financial market may adversely impact issuers in a different country, region or financial market.
Issuer concentration risk: Because the Fund typically invests in approximately 35 to 45 companies, an adverse event affecting a particular company may hurt the Fund's performance more than if it had invested in a larger number of companies.