Harbor International Growth Fund Institutional Class (HAIGX)

Investment Strategy

The Fund invests primarily (no less than 65% of its total assets under normal market conditions) in equity securities, including common and preferred stocks, of foreign companies that the Subadviser believes will experience growth and benefit from sustainable competitive advantages in their markets. The Fund may invest in companies of any size located in, or economically tied to, any country or region outside of the United States, including developed foreign and emerging markets. The Fund normally invests in at least three different countries outside of the United States.

The Subadviser primarily uses proprietary, fundamental research to seek to identify companies for investment that can exhibit sustained, above-average growth with attractive financial characteristics, such as superior profit margins and returns on invested capital. The Subadviser normally evaluates these characteristics over a three- to five-year time horizon.

When evaluating individual companies for investment, the Subadviser normally focuses on the following:

  • Opportunity: The Subadviser looks for companies that have identifiable and sustainable competitive advantages, which will enable the company to achieve above average growth rates. These competitive advantages include the degree to which there are barriers to entry in the market, the uniqueness of the company's product offerings, any enduring cost or technology advantages and the loyalty of the company's customers.
  • Execution: The Subadviser looks for companies that have management teams that are capable of capitalizing on the opportunities available to them. This analysis involves an assessment of the strength of the company's financial position, including its ability to fund growth opportunities internally through sufficiently attractive profit margins, and an assessment of the management team's actions, including how management chooses to put excess capital to work through reinvestment or acquisitions.
  • Valuation: After assessing the growth opportunity and management team at each company being evaluated, the Subadviser then compares the current stock price with the Subadviser's view of the value of the growth potential.  The Subadviser seeks to invest in companies which appear to be undervalued on this basis.

The Subadviser may, from time to time and at its discretion, seek to hedge the value of a portion of the Fund's foreign currency exposure to attempt to preserve the value of the Fund's investments in U.S. dollar terms. However, the Subadviser does not normally expect to hedge the Fund's foreign currency exposure.

The Subadviser may sell or reduce the Fund's investment in a portfolio security if the Subadviser detects a material diminution to either the company's growth opportunity or in the level of confidence the Subadviser has in company management's ability to exploit that opportunity. The Subadviser also regularly considers the company's valuation, and whether the current stock price has risen to a level that better reflects the Subadviser's view of the company's future growth potential. However, the Subadviser does not normally trade based upon short-term price movements, as it considers such moves to be poor predictors of long-term results.


Investing in international and emerging markets poses special risks, including potentially greater price volatility due to social, political and economic factors, as well as currency exchange rate fluctuations. These risks are more severe for securities of issuers in emerging market regions.

Stock markets are volatile and equity values can decline significantly in response to adverse issuer, political, regulatory, market and economic conditions.