From the Editor...
The general news has been dominated for some time by the presidential election, never more than in the past week with the unexpected win on Nov. 8 by Donald Trump. Although the markets didn't plunge as many thought would happen, there remains quite a bit of uncertainty about a Trump White House. There are a lot of questions and few answers at this point, but that doesn't mean the conversations aren't happening in all pockets of the financial markets. We've put together a list of 10 Things fund directors may want to consider as the 45th president's inauguration date draws closer and they begin initiating conversations with the advisers with which they work.
In regular business, the end of the year often is a time of planning. For the board of Schroders Funds, that planning involves a clear and concise end to their mandate. The adviser already has moved 10 funds over to another platform, and the six remaining will be moved into a series trust in the first quarter of 2017. Once that second deal is approved by shareholders, the Schroders Funds directors will disband.
And at Principal Funds, the planning they're doing right now has to do with filling a seat vacated by a new director who resigned after just six months at the table. The Principal Funds board's policy prohibiting directors from serving on more than one fund board prompted Drew Lawton's resignation, and now the board is down one director. Does the board start from scratch in trying to fill the unexpectedly empty seat? Or is there a shortlist from the initial search that can be used? How can boards protect themselves against a situation like this? All questions that are likely being asked at Principal Funds right now.
We continue to follow director moves, regulatory developments—including the yet-to-be-finalized rule on fund of derivatives—and other issues that impact mutual fund boards, and we are eager to hear your ideas and feedback. If there's an issue you're curious about, please reach out. And if there's a subject you'd like to write about for our Viewpoints section, let us know. We're always happy to hear from readers.
Hillary Jackson, founding editor, Fund Board Views