What we're looking at
This week's Number Cruncher series focuses on mutual fund families you may not have heard of, but are worth knowing about.
Front Street Capital, a Toronto-based firm with some killer funds that focus on junior resource companies.
The funds presented here are ranked by assets. To assess their performance, we've presented their quartile rankings over the past one- through 10-year periods. Quartiles divide funds in a category in four groupings - a ranking in the first and second quartiles is what you want to see as an investor.
There are multiple classes of each fund in this family. A single version of each fund is displayed here.
What we found
Front Street Special Opportunities Canadian lost almost half its value in 2008 - 46.3 per cent to be exact. That's the scary downside of this fund. The upside is a 10-year average annual return of 24.1 per cent under manager Normand Lamarche, who investors with long memories may recall from his days at Altamira. How did Mr. Lamarche follow up on that nasty fall in '08? Oh, just with a gain of 131.4 per cent, double the average in the natural resource fund category.
Mr. Lamarche also runs Front Street Growth, a small-cap fund that lost 53.5 per cent in 2008 and yet has routinely delivered returns that beat most competitors.
Front Street Diversified Income is a bit of a departure - a balanced fund that has shown much less volatility than average during the past three years while delivering well above average returns.
Funds offered by Front Street are widely available and have a minimum upfront investment of as little as $500. The cost of owning these funds can be on the high side, and that's without the performance fees reflected in several of the management expense ratios shown here.