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The Nine Biggest Surprises in Funds in 2007

A year of returns and departures, as well as blowups in unexpected places.

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It has been a turbulent year in the stock and bond markets, as both asset classes have bounced around due to bad news regarding the economy and credit cycle. And in the fund industry, we've seen some very significant personnel changes. Here's a rundown of the events that surprised us the most in 2007.

David Corkins Leaves Janus
Corkins, one of Janus' most experienced, accomplished managers, departed on Nov. 1. This was a big blow to a shop that appeared to be on the rebound; Corkins steered  Janus Growth & Income  (JAGIX) to a fine record before changing jobs twice to help turn around other funds. The announcement came on the heels of news that veteran skipper Scott Schoelzel (manager of   Janus Twenty (JAVLX)) will step down the funds at year-end. And then came news of the departure of rising star Minyoung Sohn (who had taken over Growth & Income).

Jean-Marie Eveillard Back in Action
Another big surprise on the personnel front: Charles de Vaulx, who had taken over several First Eagle funds (including  First Eagle Global  (SGOVX)) in 2004 from longtime boss Jean-Marie Eveillard (who had retired), abruptly departed in March 2007. Eveillard was quickly brought back on board; he's to serve as manager for one year, then gradually scale back his duties over the following several years.

Greg Carlson does not own (actual or beneficial) shares in any of the securities mentioned above. Find out about Morningstar’s editorial policies.