U.S. Equity Fund (USEF)

Fund Characteristics
Fund Performance (Gross)
Fund Performance (Net)
Risk and Disclosures

Fund Objective, Strategy and Holdings

  • Earn long-term capital appreciation from a broadly diversified portfolio of primarily U.S. stocks.
  • Holds securities of publicly-traded U.S. based real estate investment trusts (REITs), limited partnership interests in private U.S. real estate and other private investments (venture capital, buyouts, etc.) of U.S. companies.
  • Holds equity index futures of U.S. stock indexes.

Management

The U.S. Equity Fund (USEF) invests with investment managers that specialize in broadly diversified strategies. USEF also invests with more than a dozen general partners through its real estate and private equity investments. Over 30% of the Fund is invested in passive strategies while the remainder is actively managed. These managers rely on professional judgment that involves the use of fundamental analysis to select securities. They seek to invest in attractively valued companies that represent above-average long-term investment opportunities. Each active manager has an objective to outperform specific performance benchmarks related to their investment style.

Asset Managers

* Signatory to the United Nations Principles for Responsible Investment

 

Performance Review

During the third quarter of 2017, the fund’s strategic overweight to small- and mid-sized company stocks, with a corresponding underweight in large-company stocks, contributed positively to benchmark-relative performance. Alternatively, the fund’s allocation to private equity and private real estate detracted from performance. Quarterly performance was also impacted by poor investment selection within the top performing information technology sector; specifically two “FinTech” investments within the real estate industry detracted the most.

Fund Performance

Performance, Gross of Fees

 

U.S. Equity Fund – September 30, 2017

USEF_chart1
 
The accompanying chart represents the range of investment returns for the BNY Mellon Master Trust Universe for U.S. Equity manager asset pools. BNY Mellon provides a fund-level tracking service used to compare Wespath's actual gross of fees performance for its U.S. Equity strategy to the performance of similar asset pools of other institutional investors. The Universe includes corporate, foundation, endowment, public, Taft-Hartley and health care plans. Source: BNY Mellon.
 

See Risks and Disclosures for more information regarding Gross of Fees Performance.

 

Performance, Net of Fees - September 30, 2017

  3 mo YTD 1 yr 3 yr 5 yr 10 yr
U.S. Equity Fund
4.07%
13.35%
17.47%
9.96%
13.69%
7.10%
Russell 3000 Index
4.57%
13.91%
18.71% 10.74%
14.23%
7.57%
 

See Risks and Disclosures for more information regarding Net of Fees Performance.

 

Fund Statistics as of September 30, 2017

  USEF2 Benchmark
Wgt. Mkt. Cap ($MM) $101,908 $148,099
Price/Earnings 27.8 26.7
Price to Book 2.5 2.7
Dividend Yield3 1.4% 1.8%
# of Stocks 2,216 2,981
 
2 Reflects the portion of the fund portfolio that is invested in public equities and REITs.
 
3 Does not reflect the deduction of fees.
 

Risk Characteristics as of September 30, 2017

Statistics (trailing 5 years) USEF Benchmark
Beta 0.98 -  
R-Squared 0.97 -  
 

Fund Holdings as of September 30, 2017

Top 10 Stock Holdings

Company Fund % % of USEF Benchmark
Apple Inc. 1.8% 3.1%
Microsoft Corporation 1.5% 2.1%
Amazon.com, Inc. 1.3% 1.5%
Facebook, Inc. 1.3% 1.5%
Alphabet Inc. 1.2% 2.2%
Bank of America Corporation 0.9% 1.0%
JPMorgan Chase & Co. 0.8% 1.3%
Wells Fargo & Co. 0.7% 1.0%
Visa Inc. 0.7% 0.7%
Citigroup Inc. 0.7% 0.8%

 

Complete list of fund holdings PDF file
 

Holdings-Based Style Allocations as of September 30, 2017

Style USEF Actual (%) USEF Benchmark (%) Difference (%)
U.S. Equity Securities 90.0% 100% -10.0%
   Large Cap 42.8% 66.3% -23.5%
      Large Cap Core 9.8% 18.7%  
      Large Cap Growth 18.3% 26.3%  
      Large Cap Value 14.7% 21.3%  
   Mid Cap 28.5% 25.9% +2.6%
      Mid Cap Core 8.8% 7.6%  
      Mid Cap Growth 8.5% 7.2%  
      Mid Cap Value 11.2% 11.1%  
   Small Cap 18.7% 7.8% +10.9%
      Small Cap Core 3.7% 2.0%  
      Small Cap Growth 10.0% 3.0%  
      Small Cap Value 5.0% 2.8%  
Alternatives 7.0% 0.0% +7.0%
   Private Equity 4.1% 0.0%  
   Private Real Estate 2.9% 0.0%  
Unassigned 0.9% 0.0% +0.9%
Cash 2.1% 0.0% +2.1% 
 


Sector Weightings as of September 30, 2017

USEF_chart3
Sector weights include Private Equity and Private Real Estate categorized as Alternatives. Cash is equitized. ADRs and non-U.S. Securities are categorized as "other."
 

Expense Ratio

All expenses of the Fund are deducted from the Fund’s net asset value. The expenses include investment management fees, operating expenses, bank custodial fees and miscellaneous Fund administration expenses. These expenses are paid directly by USEF, and are reflected in the unit price calculated for the Fund. The unit price is multiplied by the number of units held in each client’s account to determine the total value of the client’s holdings in the Fund. For 2016, USEF’s expenses were approximately 0.67% of the Fund’s total assets.

Risk and Disclosures

All investments carry some degree of risk that will affect the value of the Fund’s holdings, its investment performance and the price of its units. As a result, loss of money is a risk of investing in the fund. USEF is subject to the following principal investment risks: market risk, investment style risk, security-specific risk, country risk, currency risk, derivatives risk and liquidity risk.

For further discussion of the Fund’s investments strategies and risks, please refer to "Principal Investment Strategies and Principal Investment Risks of the Funds — US Equities Fund" in the Wespath Investment Funds Description.

 

Lending of Portfolio Securities

The Fund seeks to earn additional income by lending a portion of its portfolio securities to brokers, dealers and other financial institutions. The loans are secured at all times by cash and liquid high-grade debt obligations. As with any extension of credit, there are risks of delay in recovery and in some cases even loss of rights in the collateral should the borrower fail financially. In additionally, losses could result from the reinvestment of the cash collateral received on loaned securities.

Gross of Fees Performance

Since January 1, 2006, Wespath has applied a more diversified investment strategy, including the use of multiple investment managers, in managing USEF. The performance chart and table show the actual compounded annual rate of return of the Fund since January 1, 2006.

The Fund generally does not invest in companies that derive more than 10% of their revenue from gambling or from the manufacture, sale or distribution of alcoholic beverages, tobacco-related products, adult entertainment, weapons, or the management or operation of prison facilities.

Fund Facts

Inception December 31, 1997
Exp. Ratio 0.67% for 2016
Benchmark Russell 3000™ Index
Fund Assets $6.78 Billion as of October 31, 2017
Index Weight of Stocks Ineligible for Purchase 4.25% as of March 31, 2017
Holdings (PDF) September 30, 2017
Holdings (XLS) October 31, 2017
Unit Price History Wespath Funds Price History
For More Information Investment Funds Description
 

Fund Managers

brian_boyer

Brian Boyer, CFA

Director, Equities
With Wespath since 2003
B.A. and B.E. from Dartmouth College
MBA from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania
CFA Charterholder
 
amy_bulger01

Amy Bulger

Manager, Alternative Investments
With Wespath since 2013
B.S. from Northern Illinois University
MBA from the Kellstadt Graduate School of Business at DePaul University
  
mark_warren

Mark Warren, CFA, CIMA

Manager, Public Equities
With Wespath since 2015
B.S. from Purdue University
CFA Charterholder
CIMA Certification
 
 
©2017 Wespath Investment Management, a division of Wespath Benefits and Investments, a general agency of The United Methodist Church. All Right Reserved.