SOURCE: Capital Link, Inc.

April 21, 2008 14:51 ET

Annual Closed-End Fund & ETF Awards - 2008 Winners

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - April 21, 2008) - The Annual Closed End Fund & ETF Awards, an initiative of Capital Link, a New York based investor relations and financial communications firm, aim to identify and recognize annually those fund sponsors and executives who consistently apply high standards of financial disclosure, investor and shareholder relations.

Nicolas Bornozis, President of Capital Link, mentioned that the CEF & ETF Awards are based on nominations by a committee of analysts and industry specialists who actively follow CEFs and ETFs. Capital Link is not part of the Nominating Committee. The Awards are presented within the context of the 7th Annual Forum on Closed-End Funds & Global ETFs that took place on Wednesday, April 16 in New York City.

The Nominating Committee in 2008 is comprised of

--  Mr. Herb Blank, SVP, Head of Quantitative Products, Rapid Ratings
    International,
--  Ms. Mariana Bush, Closed-End Funds & Exchange Traded Funds Senior
    Analyst, Wachovia Securities,
--  Mr. John Cejka, Manager of Fixed Income Research & Closed-End Funds,
    A.G. Edwards,
--  Ms. Amy Charles, Director, Closed-End Fund Research, Raymond James &
    Associates,
--  Mr. Dennis Emanuel, Managing Director, Closed-End Fund & ETF Research,
    Citigroup Investment Research,
--  Mr. Jon Maier, Senior Director, Closed-End Fund Research, Investment
    Strategy Group, Merrill Lynch,
--  Ms. Sangeeta Marfatia, Closed End Fund Analyst, Director, UBS Wealth
    Management Research,
--  Mr. Paul Mazzilli, Director of ETF Research, Research, Morgan Stanley,
--  Mr. Alex Reiss, Analyst, V.P., Closed-End Fund & ETF Research, Stifel
    Nicolaus,
--  Mr. Kristoph Rollenhagen, Sr. V.P. - Exchange-Traded & Closed-End
    Funds, Oppenheimer & Co.,
--  Mr. Joseph G. Witthohn, Director of ETF Research, Janney Montgomery
    Scott,
--  Mr. Darren Young, Product Manager - Exchange Traded Funds and Notes,
    RBC Wealth Management.
    

The Most Innovative New Product Awards are presented to the Fund Sponsor who came up with the most innovative product in CEFs and ETFs during the prior year.

The Best Shareholder Relations Awards are presented to the Fund Sponsor who practices best financial disclosure and is proactive in investor and shareholder communications. Among the criteria used were the quality and regularity of financial disclosure by the Fund Sponsor. Also their pro-activeness in terms of communication with the investment public through frequent presentations, conference calls, webcasts, conferences, product literature, etc.

The Awards for Best Investor Relations Websites are presented to the Fund Sponsor who maintains the most informative and user friendly financial website, focused on Closed End Funds or ETFs respectively.

The Awards for Contribution to the Closed End Fund and ETF sectors are presented to the individuals for their contribution during the last year to the Closed-End Fund and ETF sectors respectively. Members of the Nominating Committee cannot be candidates for these Awards.

The Most Innovative Index Award is presented to the Sponsor who came up with the most innovative Index in 2007.

The Best ETF Focused Publication is presented to the publication that best covered the ETF sector in 2007.

CLOSED-END FUND AWARDS - 2008 WINNERS

The Most Innovative New Closed-End Fund in 2007 Award was presented to Eaton Vance Management for the Risk-Managed Diversified Equity Income Fund (NYSE: ETJ) by Ms. Jennifer E. Wolt, Director, Global Corporate Client Group, New York Stock Exchange.

Mr. Jonathan Isaac Vice President of Eaton Vance Management accepted the award and stated: "Eaton Vance is very proud to receive this award for ETJ. The fund can be viewed as the culmination of our prior ventures into the option income space incorporating all the best features of these and adding some new ones. Certainly the timing of this risk-managed offering could not have been more appropriate as can be seen by the investment performance of the fund since inception as measured by NAV. ETJ is structured to improve upon the BXM's reduced volatility levels while providing high levels of tax advantaged equity-like returns."

The Best Shareholder Relations by a non-US Closed-End Fund Family in 2007 Award was presented for third year in a row to ING Investment Management by Mr. Frank Sileo, Director of CEF & ETF Research, Citi Smith Barney.

Mr. Jake Tuzza, Vice President Structure Assets & Innovation of ING Investment Management who accepted the award stated that: "ING Investment Management is delighted to be the recipient of this important award for the third year in a row. It acknowledges our commitment to serving shareholders and analysts in the closed-end fund marketplace. We believe communications and proactive investor relations are key to the long term performance of our funds."

The Best Shareholder Relations by a US Equity Closed-End Fund Family in 2007 Award was presented for third year in a row to Eaton Vance Management by Mr. Jon Maier, Investment Strategy Group, Merrill Lynch.

Mr. Jonathan Isaac, Vice President, Closed-End Funds of Eaton Vance Management who accepted the award stated that: "Eaton Vance is delighted to have received this recognition for a third year in succession. The quality and timeliness of the dissemination of information on all our Closed-End Funds is of vital importance and, we feel, has a direct impact on how he funds trade."

The Best Shareholder Relations by a Fixed Income Closed-End Fund Family in 2007 was presented to Nuveen Investments by Ms. Amy Charles, Director Closed-End Fund Research, Raymond James & Associates.

Ms. Ann Kritzmire, Head of Marketing of Nuveen Investments who accepted the award stated on behalf of Bill Adams, Executive Vice President, Nuveen Investments that: "We are pleased to receive this recognition from Capital Link, Inc. and industry analysts covering closed-end funds. We are deeply committed to supporting closed-end fund investors and the advisors who serve them. We will continue to focus on providing greater transparency and education as the industry weathers the current cycle of market uncertainty."

The Best Investor Relations Closed-End Fund Website in 2007 was presented to Nuveen Investments by Mr. Kristoph Rollenhagen, Sr.V.P. - Research, Closed-End Funds and ETFs, Oppenheimer & Co.

Ms. Ann Kritzmire, Head of Marketing of Nuveen Investments accepted the award.

The Award For Contribution to the Closed-End Fund sector in 2007 was presented to Mr. David Lamb, Managing Director & Head of Modeling & Analysis Group, of Nuveen Investments. The Award was presented by Ms. Sangeeta Marfatia, Closed End Fund Analyst, Director, UBS Wealth Management Research.

Mr. David Lamb, Managing Director & Head of Modeling & Analysis Group of Nuveen Investments accepted the award.

ETF AWARDS - 2008 WINNERS

The Most Innovative New ETF Product in 2007 Award was presented to Invesco PowerShares Capital Management for the PowerShares S&P 500 BuyWrite ETF (NYSE: PBP) by Mr. Thomas Rzepski, Vice President - ETF Marketplace, American Stock Exchange.

Mr. Edward McRedmond, Senior Vice President - Portfolio Strategies of Invesco PowerShares Capital Management who accepted the award stated that: "On behalf of myself and PowerShares, I am honoured to receive this award. I'd like to thank all my colleagues on the nominating committee for all they do to educate investors and promote ETFs, along with Capital Link for hosting this conference. Thank you again."

The Best Shareholder Relations in 2007 Award was presented to Barclays Global Investors by Mr.Paul Mazzilli, Director ETF Research, Morgan Stanley.

Mr. Brendan Ahern, Business Development Officer at Barclays Global Investors who accepted the award stated that: "It is an honor to receive this award for the fourth consecutive year. We are committed to ensuring and fostering transparency by clearly communicating risks, returns, taxes and costs in everything we do and we work hard to have honest conversations with advisors without hype to prepare them to have frank conversations with their clients. Thus we are delighted to be recognized for our efforts."

The Best Investor Relations Website In 2007 Award was presented for a second year in a row to Barclays Global Investors by Mr. Joe Witthohn, Director of ETF Research, Janney Montgomery Scott.

Mr. Dodd Kittsley, Strategist at Barclays Global Investors who accepted the award stated: "A core business objective is to have a user friendly, information-rich website for investors. Our website contains numerous portfolio tools, a wealth of data and product information, as well as a robust educational web component, and we are delighted to be recognized for our efforts. "

The Most Innovative Index In 2007 Award was presented to Mergent, Inc. & Ryan ALM, Inc. for the Mergent/Ryan ALM Investible Benchmark Bond Indices by Mr. Matthew Moran, Vice President, Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE).

Mr. Bob Andrialis, President of Mergent who accepted the award stated that: "When we began our strategic alliance with Mergent in early 2007, our goal was to bring a new breed of bond indexes that break with tradition, solve many of the fundamental problems that bond index funds face and best fit ETFs. Our recent Capital Link award for the most innovative bond index in 2007 hopefully suggests that we are on the right track. We will be bringing many more innovative bond indexes to the financial markets soon. Given the successful trend towards fundamental indexes for equity, we urge the financial industry to pay attention to our new fundamental bond indexes that best fit ETFs and index funds. Traditional bond indexes have numerous rules that make them difficult indexes to replicate and understand. As our research explains, it is almost impossible to market weight most bond indexes due to stripping (Treasuries and Agencies) and delayed prepayments (mortgages) as traditional bond indexes rules require. Given the normal large index portfolios of traditional bond indexes usually makes liquidity, pricing and replication more difficult. Moreover, they also allow callable bonds which make the interest rate sensitivity less distinct."

The Award for Contribution to the ETF Sector In 2007 was presented to Mr. Edward McRedmond, Senior Vice President - Portfolio Strategies from Invesco PowerShares Capital Management by Ms. Mariana Bush, Closed-End Funds & Exchange-Traded Funds Analyst, Wachovia Securities.

Mr. Edward McRedmond commented: "On behalf of myself and PowerShares, I am honored to receive this award. I'd like to thank all my colleagues on the nominating committee for all they do to educate investors and promote ETFs, along with Capital Link for hosting this conference. I've been so fortunate to work and interact with so many talented and passionate people in the ETF business, many of whom are equally deserving of this award. Thank you again."

The Award for the Best ETF Focused Publication In 2007 was presented to Exchange-Traded Funds Report (ETFR) by Mr. Alex Reiss, Analyst, V.P., Closed-End Fund & ETF Research, Stifel Nicolaus.

Mr. Jim Wiandt, Editor of IndexUniverse.com who accepted the award commented: "We are delighted to be recognized by the Capital Link Forum for our work on ETFR. This dynamic industry makes it easy for us to produce a lively publication, and doing so gives us, and we hope our readers great pleasure."

ANNUAL CEF & ETF ANALYST AWARDS - 2008 WINNERS

The Annual Closed End Fund & ETF Analyst Awards, an initiative of Capital Link, a New York based investor relations and financial communications firm, aim to identify and recognize annually those firms and individual analysts who with their research work contribute to the development of the CEF and ETF sectors respectively.

Nicolas Bornozis, President of Capital Link, mentioned that the CEF & ETF Analyst Awards are based on nominations by committee of Closed-End Fund and ETF sponsors respectively. Capital Link is not part of any of the Nominating Committees. The Analyst Awards are presented within the context of the 7th Annual Forum on Closed-End Funds & Global ETFs that took place on Wednesday, April 16 in New York City.

The Nominating Committee for the CEF Analyst Awards in 2008 is comprised of

--  Mr. Steven A. Baffico, Director of Strategic Initiatives, BlackRock
    Investments,
--  Mr. Doug Bond, EVP & Portfolio Manager, Closed-End Opportunity Fund,
    Cohen & Steers,
--  Mr. Tony Clarizio, V.P. Product Manager, Pioneer Investments,
--  Mr. David Lamb, Managing Director, Head of Modeling & Analysis Group,
    Nuveen Investments,
--  Mr. Kenneth Fincher, Vice President, Director of Product Management &
    Client Advocacy, Calamos Investments,
--  Mr. Jonathan Isaac, Vice President, Closed-End Funds, Eaton Vance
    Managed Investments,
--  Mr. Jeffrey Margolin, Vice President and Closed-End Fund Analyst,
    First Trust Advisors,
--  Mr. Jake Tuzza, Vice President, Structure Assets & Innovation, ING
    Investment Management
    

The Nominating Committee for the ETF Analyst Awards in 2008 is comprised of

--  Mr. Tom Anderson, Vice President and Head of Strategy and Research,
    State Street Global Advisors,
--  Mr. Keith Botti, Strategist, ProShare Advisors, Mr. Dodd F. Kittsley,
    Strategist, Barclays Global Investors,
--  Mr. Jeffrey Margolin, Vice President & Closed-End Fund Analyst, First
    Trust Advisors,
--  Mr. Edward McRedmond, SVP - Portfolio Strategies, Invesco PowerShares
    Capital Management,
--  Mr. Adam Phillips, ETF Director, Van Eck Global,
--  Ms. Melissa Nassar, Principal, Vanguard Financial Advisor Services,
--  Mr. Luciano Siracusano, Director of Research, WisdomTree Investments.
    

The Best Research Team for CEFs & ETFs in 2007 Awards are presented to Firms whose Research team contributed the most to the CEF & ETF sector in 2007.

For Contribution to the CEF & ETF Sector in 2007 Awards are presented to an individual analyst whose work contributed the most to the CEF 7 ETF sector in 2007.

The Winners were the following:

CEF ANALYST AWARDS

The Best Research Team for Closed-End Funds in 2007 Award was presented to Citi Smith Barney by Mr. Steven Baffico, Director of Strategic Initiatives, BlackRock Investments.

Mr. Dennis Emanuel, Managing Director CEF & ETF Research from at Citigroup Investment Research accepted the award.

The Award For Contribution to the Closed-End Fund Sector in 2007 was presented to Ms. Mariana Bush, CEF & ETF Analyst from Wachovia Securities by Mr. Jeffrey Margolin, Vice President, First Trust Advisors.

Ms. Mariana Bush commented: "It is an honor to receive this recognition from Capital Link, and I would like to extend my gratitude to all the CEF and ETF industry leaders, who served on the nominating committees."

ETF ANALYST AWARDS

The Best Research Team for Exchange Traded Funds in 2007 Award was presented to Morgan Stanley by Mr. Luciano Siracusano, Director of Research, WisdomTree Investments.

Mr. Paul Mazzilli, Director ETF Research from Morgan Stanley who accepted the award stated that: "It is an honor to receive this recognition of our leadership in ETF research. Morgan Stanley was the first firm to provide comprehensive ETF research and strategy for our institutional clients and individual investors. I would like to thank the team members who have worked with me over the past ten years in developing this expertise."

The Award For Contribution to the ETF Sector in 2007 was presented to Ms. Mariana Bush, CEF & ETF Analyst from Wachovia Securities by Mr. Tom Anderson, CFA, Vice President and Head of Strategy and Research, State Street Global Advisors.

CLOSED-END FUND AWARDS
Most Innovative New Closed-End Fund in 2007
Eaton Vance Management
for the Risk-Managed Diversified Equity Income Fund (NYSE: ETJ)

Best Shareholder Relations by a non-US Closed-End Fund Family in 2007
ING Investment Management

Best Shareholder Relations by a US Equity Closed-End Fund Family in 2007
Eaton Vance Management

Best Shareholder Relations by a Fixed Income Fund Family in 2007
Nuveen Investments

Best Investor Relations Website in 2007
Nuveen Investments

For Contribution to the Closed-End Fund sector in 2007
Mr. David Lamb
Managing Director & Head of Modeling & Analysis Group
Nuveen Investments

ETF Awards
Most Innovative New ETF Product in 2007
Invesco PowerShares Capital Management
for the PowerShares S&P 500 BuyWrite ETF (NYSE: PBP)

Best Shareholder Relations in 2007
Barclays Global Investors

Best Investor Relations ETF Website In 2007
Barclays Global Investors

Most Innovative Index In 2007
Mergent, Inc. & Ryan ALM, Inc.
for the Mergent/Ryan ALM Investible Benchmark Bond Indices

For Contribution to the ETF Sector In 2007
Mr. Edward McRedmond
Senior Vice President - Portfolio Strategies
Invesco PowerShares Capital Management

Best ETF Focused Publication In 2007
Exchange-Traded Funds Report (ETFR)
Mr. Jim Wiandt, Editor

CEF Analyst Awards
Best Research Team for Closed-End Funds in 2007
Citi Smith Barney

For Contribution to the Closed-End Fund Sector in 2007
Ms. Mariana Bush, CEF & ETF Analyst
Wachovia Securities

ETF Analyst Awards
Best Research Team for Exchange-Traded Funds in 2007
Morgan Stanley

For Contribution to the ETF Sector in 2007
Ms. Mariana Bush, CEF & ETF Analyst
Wachovia Securities

Contact Information

  • For additional information please contact:
    Nicolas Bornozis
    President
    Capital Link, Inc.
    Tel. 212-661-7566
    E-mail: fundforum@capitallink.com