Northern Trust, one of the world's largest fixed income managers, now has a total of 15 fixed income mutual funds in its Northern Funds lineup. Seven fixed income funds have been awarded four- and five-star overall ratings by Morningstar, as of May 31, 2009.
The Northern Tax-Advantaged Ultra-Short Fixed Income Fund and Northern Ultra-Short Fixed Income Fund have a minimum initial investment of $1 million and are intended for investors with an investment horizon of at least one year who want to move a portion of their money market fund assets into slightly longer maturity, higher yield securities. The Tax-Advantaged Ultra-Short Fixed Income Fund is designed to maximize after-tax return for investors in higher tax brackets by pursuing best net after-tax yield and total return opportunities in both taxable and tax-exempt securities.
"As we continue to face uncertainty regarding an economic and financial market recovery, investors have become increasingly interested in the potential benefits of having fixed income assets in their investment portfolios," said Colin Robertson, managing director of fixed income investments at Northern Trust. "For investors looking to get back into the market, the new funds are designed to provide opportunity for both higher yields than money funds and capital appreciation with minimal volatility."
Carol Sullivan, director of Northern Trust's Enhanced Cash Group, manages both of the funds. As director of the group for more than 10 years, Sullivan is responsible for managing Northern Trust's taxable and tax-exempt investment accounts. Senior portfolio manager Patrick D. Quinn is co-manager of the Northern Tax-Advantaged Ultra-Short Fixed Income Fund and Scott Warner, also a senior portfolio manager, is co-manager of the Northern Ultra-Short Fixed Income Fund. After spending four years managing the Northern Collective Short Term Investment Fund, Quinn joined the Enhanced Cash Group in 2001. Warner joined Northern Trust in 2000 as a portfolio manager in Short Duration Fixed Income and has worked in the Enhanced Cash Group since 2006.
The Northern Tax-Advantaged Ultra-Short Fixed Income Fund and the Northern Ultra-Short Fixed Income Fund strive to maintain a six- to 18-month average maturity, under normal circumstances, with
a maximum security maturity of three years. They are managed in an effort to have an average portfolio quality rating of A or better, with all securities investment grade.
The funds are scheduled to make dividend distributions monthly and have a 1 percent redemption fee on shares sold or exchanged within 90 days of purchase. They are not money market funds, which maintain a $1.00 net asset value (NAV); rather, the ultra-short duration funds' NAVs will fluctuate with their returns.
About Morningstar Ratings
Star ratings are based on a Morningstar Risk-Adjusted Return measure that accounts for variation in a fund's monthly performance (including the effects of sales charges and redemption fees), placing more emphasis on downward variations and rewarding consistent performance. The overall rating is a weighted average of the 3-, 5-, and 10-year (if applicable) returns. 5 stars = top 10% of funds in an asset category; 4 stars = next 22.5% of funds; 3 stars = next 35%; 2 stars = next 22.5% and 1 star = next 10%. A fund must be in existence three years to be rated. Ratings are subject to change monthly.
©2009 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Morningstar and/or its content providers are the proprietors of this information; do not permit its unauthorized copying or distribution; do not warrant it to be accurate, complete or timely; and are not responsible for damages or losses arising from its use.
Bond Risk: Bond funds will tend to experience smaller fluctuations in value than stock funds. However, investors in any bond fund should anticipate fluctuations in price, especially for longer-term issues and in environments of rising interest rates.
Tax Free/AMT Risk: Tax-exempt funds' income may be subject to certain state and local taxes and, depending on your tax status, the federal alternative minimum tax.
Please carefully read the prospectus and consider the investment objectives, risks, charges and expenses of Northern Funds before investing. Call 800-595-9111 to obtain a prospectus, which contains this and other information about the funds.
Northern Funds are distributed by Northern Funds Distributors, LLC, Boston, MA, not affiliated with Northern Trust.
About Northern Trust
Northern Trust Corporation (Nasdaq: NTRS) is a leading provider of investment management, asset and fund administration, fiduciary and banking solutions for corporations, institutions and affluent individuals worldwide. Northern Trust, a financial holding company based in Chicago, has a network of more than 80 offices in 18 U.S. states and has international offices in 15 locations in North America, Europe, the Middle East and the Asia-Pacific region. As of March 31, 2009, Northern Trust had assets under custody of US$2.8 trillion, and assets under investment management of US$522.3 billion. Northern Trust, founded in 1889, has earned distinction as an industry leader in combining exceptional service and expertise with innovative products and technology. For more information, visit http://www.northerntrust.com.