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Van Eck Mutual Funds
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The third quarter produced relatively low performance across
equities and fixed income with the S&P 500® Index and Barclays
US Aggregate Index returning 1.13% and 0.17%, respectively.
However, there was significant dispersion amongst the returns
of large-cap and small-cap equities, and an increase in volatility
across the market. During the third quarter, the Russell 2000 Index
returned -7.36% and the CBOE Volatility Index fluctuated between a
low of 10.32% and a high of 17.03%.
Geopolitical risks due to the escalating conflict in the Middle East,
the ongoing issues between Ukraine and Russia, and concerns
about future global economic activity continued to weigh heavily
on global markets. On July 30, the Federal Open Market Committee
(the “FOMC”) released meeting minutes detailing the reduction
of its asset purchase program by $10 billion per month based on
continued economic growth, but also cited the issue of persistent
underutilization in the labor market.
The Investment Committee continues to target the Fund’s long-term
volatility towards the mid-point of its 4-6% range, as measured by
standard deviation, while remaining diversified across long/short
equity, event driven, fixed income, volatility, multi-strategy, and
global macro strategies. The volatility of the Fund is expected to
fluctuate over short time horizons based on the overall volatility of
the market and the allocations of the sub-advisers.
Hunting Hill Global Capital, LLC (“Hunting Hill”) (6.5% of Fund net
assets*) is our newest allocation within the Fund. Hunting Hill
was founded in 2010 as a privately held investment management
company located in New York City. The Hunting Hill equity arbitrage
strategy seeks to exploit temporary market inefficiencies that occur
across financial securities due to both macroeconomic shocks and
corporate events. The Fund liquidated its only global macro position, the AQR
Managed Futures Fund, at the beginning of August. The Investment
Committee currently favors an allocation to Hunting Hill based
on the potential for it to generate performance during periods of
The Fund’s aggregate allocation to long/short equity strategies
returned -0.61% versus -0.96% for the Market Vectors North
America Long/Short Equity Index. The Fund’s allocation to event-driven strategies returned -4.48%
vs. -0.04% for the Market Vectors Global Event Driven Index. The Fund’s allocation to a multi-strategy sub-adviser, Horizon Asset
Management, LLC (“Horizon”) (10.2% of Fund net assets*), returned
-4.87%. The tactical allocation (19.1% of Fund net assets*) returned 1.17%.
*All weightings as of September 30, 2014.
Read full 3Q Commentary >>
Director of Manager Research, Multi-Manager Alternatives Investment Team
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In general, “hedge-style” strategies are advanced investment techniques that may, among other things, attempt to reduce risk and enhance returns. Typically, “hedge-style” investments have been structured as private investment vehicles known as hedge funds. Recently, however, these strategies have begun to appear in mutual fund structures as well.
At Van Eck, we group hedge-style strategies into five broad categories:
Seeks to exploit price differences in identical, related or similar securities on different markets or in different forms so as to minimize overall market risk. Strategies may include convertible arbitrage, fixed income or interest rate arbitrage, pairs trading and merger arbitrage.
Seeks to exploit market trends and inefficiencies in equity markets. Strategies may include equity market neutral, long-only, long/short equity and short-only.
Fixed Income (Long/Short)
Seeks to exploit market trends and inefficiencies in fixed income markets. Strategies may include long-only, long/short fixed income and distressed securities.
Seeks to exploit broad market trends in equities, interest rates or commodity prices. Strategies may include emerging markets, special situations and managed futures.
Seeks to control/adjust the beta and volatility of the Fund. Selected securities, typically ETFs, are allocated (both long and short) to keep the Fund's exposures in line with the targets set by the investment committee. "Cash" refers to cash and/or cash equivalents.
Unless otherwise stated, portfolio facts and statistics are shown for Class A shares; other classes may have different characteristics.
†NAV: Unless you are eligible for a waiver, the public offering price you pay when you buy Class A shares of the Fund is the Net Asset Value (NAV) of the shares plus an initial sales charge. The initial sales charge varies depending upon the size of your purchase. No sales charge is imposed where Class A shares are issued to you pursuant to the automatic investment of income dividends or capital gains distributions. It is the responsibility of the financial intermediary to ensure that the investor obtains the proper “breakpoint” discount. Class C, Class I and Class Y do not have an initial sales charge; however, Class C does charge a contingent deferred redemption charge. See the prospectus and summary prospectus for more information.
1Van Eck Absolute Return Advisers Corporation (the “Adviser”) has agreed to waive fees and/or pay Fund expenses to the extent necessary to prevent the operating expenses of the Fund (excluding acquired fund fees and expenses, interest expense, trading expenses, dividends and interest payments on securities sold short, taxes and extraordinary expenses) from exceeding 2.40% for Class A, 3.15% for Class C, 1.95% for Class I, and 2.00% for Class Y of the Fund’s average daily net assets per year until May 1, 2015. During such time, the expense limitation is expected to continue until the Board of Trustees acts to discontinue all or a portion of such expense limitation.
2The HFRX Global Hedge Fund Index is designed to be representative of the overall composition of the hedge fund universe, and includes convertible arbitrage, distressed securities, equity hedge, equity market neutral, event driven, macro, merger arbitrage, and relative value arbitrage strategies. The S&P® 500 Index consists of 500 widely held common stocks covering industrial, utility, financial and transportation sectors. All indices are unmanaged and include the reinvestment of all dividends, but do not reflect the payment of transaction costs, advisory fees or expenses that are associated with an investment in the Fund. An index’s performance is not illustrative of the Fund’s performance. Indices are not securities in which investments can be made.
The views and opinions expressed are those of Van Eck Global. Fund manager commentaries are general in nature and should not be construed as investment advice. Opinions are subject to change with market conditions. Any discussion of specific securities mentioned in the commentaries is neither an offer to sell nor a solicitation to buy these securities. Fund holdings will vary.
You can lose money by investing in the Fund. Any investment in the Fund should be part of an overall investment program rather than a complete program. Because the Fund implements a fund-of-funds strategy, an investor in the Fund will bear the operating expenses of the “Underlying Funds” in which the Fund invests. The total expenses borne by an investor in the Fund will be higher than if the investor invested directly in the Underlying Funds, and the returns may therefore be lower. The Fund, the Sub-Advisers and the Underlying Funds may use aggressive investment strategies, including absolute return strategies, which are riskier than those used by typical mutual funds. If the Fund and Sub-Advisers are unsuccessful in applying these investment strategies, the Fund and you may lose more money than if you had invested in another fund that did not invest aggressively. The Fund is subject to risks associated with the Sub-Advisers making trading decisions independently, investing in other investment companies, using a particular style or set of styles, basing investment decisions on historical relationships and correlations, trading frequently, using leverage, making short sales, being non-diversified and investing in securities with low correlation to the market. The use of leverage may magnify losses. The Fund is also subject to risks associated with investments in foreign markets, emerging market securities, small cap companies, debt securities, derivatives, commodity-linked instruments, illiquid securities, asset-backed securities and CMOs. Please see the prospectus and summary prospectus for information on these as well as other risk considerations.
Investing involves risk, including possible loss of principal. An investor should consider investment objectives, risks, charges and expenses of the investment company carefully before investing. The prospectus and summary prospectus contain this and other information. Please read them carefully before investing.
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