BOSTON, July 31, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- John Hancock said today that it has launched the John Hancock Global Conservative Absolute Return Fund to new sales for Class A, Class I and Class R6 shares (Class A: JHRAX, Class I: JHRIX, Class R6: JHRRX). Standard Life Investments, which has managed absolute return assets since 2005, is the fund's investment manager.
"Our new John Hancock Global Conservative Absolute Return Fund (GCAR) is yet another example of our strategy of providing investors and financial advisors exclusive access to an array of alternative investing strategies managed by premier, institutional-caliber investment management firms," said Andrew G. Arnott, President & Chief Executive Officer, John Hancock Funds, LLC.
"Compared with the John Hancock Global Absolute Return Strategies Fund, known as GARS and also managed by Standard Life Investments, the new GCAR fund offers investors the ability to further diversify their portfolios through an absolute return strategy with potentially lower volatility, zero equity exposure, and a more conservative investment philosophy. GCAR may also potentially act as a fixed income substitute for investors who are concerned about rising interest rates and correlation to broad fixed income markets," he added.
Launched late in 2011, GARS has been one of the fastest-growing funds for John Hancock, crossing the $3 billion in assets milestone in just 17 months.
"Standard Life Investments is one of the largest managers of Absolute Return Strategies with more than $40 billion under management and over 1,200 institutional clients in this type of product," noted Mr. Arnott. "And the experienced team of Ian Pizer and Roger Sadewsky has been running the GCAR strategy for Standard Life Investments' institutional clients since inception in March 2011."
Keith Skeoch, Chief Executive Officer of Standard Life Investments, said: "John Hancock and Standard Life Investments share a common commitment to providing investors with innovative products designed to meet their specific investment needs. The GCAR fund builds on our many years of experience of working in the multi-asset investing space. We believe that it will appeal to many investors looking to generate absolute returns with lower levels of volatility. The launch of the fund is further evidence of the growing relationship between Standard Life Investments and John Hancock, a relationship that allows us to deliver investment potential to the largest asset management market in the world. We look forward to working with John Hancock to help deliver absolute returns for their clients."
Ian Pizer, PhD, CFA, and Roger Sadewsky, both Investment Directors, Multi-Asset Investing with Standard Life Investments, are the portfolio managers for the GCAR fund. Mr. Pizer is responsible for the generation of interest rate strategies for inclusion across Standard Life Investments' fixed-interest portfolios and for consideration by multi-asset portfolios. Additionally, he is chair of the Bond Investment Group and a member of the Strategic Investment Group. Mr. Sadewsky provides research input into the Macro fixed income environment and has a specialist background in credit and credit derivatives.
The investment strategy underlying the GCAR fund was originally designed by Standard Life Investments to help a U.K. corporate client diversify its fixed income portfolio. While GARS invests in a spectrum of equity, equity-like, fixed income and fixed income-like securities, GCAR has no equity or equity-like exposure, which leads the fund to have a fundamentally different risk/return spectrum that looks to deliver a return commensurate with a lowered risk profile. GCAR has a 12-18 month outlook for each of its strategies, allowing it the ability to be slightly more tactical, compared with GARS' three year outlook for strategies.
The GCAR fund seeks long term absolute return. It has a broad investment mandate that permits use of an extensive range of investment strategies and investment in a wide spectrum of fixed-income securities and currencies, as well as derivative instruments, in pursuing its investment objective. The portfolio managers employ an unconstrained approach to achieving absolute return via a diversified global portfolio. The portfolio uses multiple strategies across various fixed-income asset classes and currencies. It aims to exploit market cyclicality and a diverse array of inefficiencies across and within global markets to achieve risk-adjusted absolute return, by investing in listed debt securities, and derivatives or other instruments, for both investments and hedging purposes. Derivative instruments routinely used may include futures, options, swaps and foreign currency forward contracts.
The minimum initial investment for Class A shares of the GCAR fund is $1,000, with certain exceptions.
About John Hancock Funds
The Boston-based mutual fund business unit of John Hancock Financial, John Hancock Funds is a world-class provider of asset management solutions, utilizing a unique best of breed, "manager of managers" model with an asset allocation mindset. We partner with affiliated and non-affiliated asset managers from around the world through objective manager selection and diligent oversight. John Hancock Funds manages open-end funds, closed-end funds, college savings assets, retirement plans and related party assets for individual and institutional investors.
About John Hancock Financial and Manulife Financial
John Hancock Financial is a division of Manulife Financial, a leading Canada-based financial services group with principal operations in Asia, Canada and the United States. Operating as Manulife Financial in Canada and Asia, and primarily as John Hancock in the United States, the Company offers clients a diverse range of financial protection products and wealth management services through its extensive network of employees, agents and distribution partners. Funds under management by Manulife Financial and its subsidiaries were C$555 billion (US$547 billion) as at March 31, 2013. Manulife Financial Corporation trades as 'MFC' on the TSX, NYSE and PSE, and under '945' on the SEHK. Manulife Financial can be found on the Internet at manulife.com.
The John Hancock unit, through its insurance companies, comprises one of the largest life insurers in the United States. John Hancock offers and administers a broad range of financial products, including life insurance, annuities, mutual funds, 401(k) plans, long-term care insurance, college savings, and other forms of business insurance. Additional information about John Hancock may be found at johnhancock.com.
About Standard Life Investments
As of March 31, 2013, Standard Life Investments (Corporate Funds) Limited (Standard Life Investments) managed $272.0 billion in assets under management across the spectrum of investment capabilities spanning equities, fixed income, real estate, private equity, multi-asset solutions, fund-of-funds as well as absolute return strategies. Headquartered in Edinburgh, Standard Life Investments employs more than 1,000 people. Standard Life Investments has offices globally, including locations in Boston, Hong Kong, London, Beijing, Montreal, Sydney, Dublin, Paris and Seoul. In addition, Standard Life Investments has close relationships with leading domestic players in Asia, including HDFC Asset Management in India and Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Bank in Japan. Standard Life Investments was launched as an investment management company in 1998. It is a subsidiary of Standard Life Investments (Holdings) Limited, which in turn is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Standard Life plc.
Absolute return funds are not designed to outperform stocks and bonds in strong markets. There is no guarantee of a positive return, of the fund achieving its objective, or that volatility-reducing strategies will be successful. The use of hedging and derivatives could produce disproportionate gains or losses and may increase costs. Fixed-income investments are subject to interest-rate and credit risk; their value will normally decline as interest rates rise or if a creditor is unwilling to make principal or interest payments. Illiquid securities may be difficult to sell at a price approximating their value. Currency transactions are affected by fluctuations in exchange rates. Foreign investing, especially in emerging markets, has additional risks, such as currency and market volatility, and political and social instability. Investments in higher-yielding, lower-rated securities include a higher risk of default. Please see the fund's prospectus for additional risks.
A portfolio's investment objectives, risks, charges and expenses should be considered carefully before investing. The prospectus contains this and other important information about the portfolio. To obtain a prospectus, contact your financial professional, call John Hancock Investments at 800-225-5291 or visit our website at jhfunds.com. Please read the prospectus carefully before investing or sending money.
SOURCE John Hancock Funds