Using a unique database of UK fund manager changes over the period from 1997 to 2011, we examine the impact of such changes on fund performance. We find clear evidence to suggest that a manager change does affect the benchmark-adjusted performance of UK mutual funds. In particular we find a significant deterioration in the benchmark-adjusted returns of funds that were top performers before the manager exit and, conversely, a significant improvement in the average benchmark-adjusted returns of funds that were poor performers before the manager exit. Our use of the Carhart's (1997) four-factor model reveals that the improvement in average post manager exit performance is accompanied by a reduction in market risk, a slight reduction in exposure to small cap stocks, and an increase in exposure to value and momentum stocks. Overall, our results suggest that UK fund management companies have been relatively successful in replacing bad managers with better managers, but relatively unsuccessful at finding equivalent replacements for their top performing managers. We believe that regulators should therefore try to ensure that all efforts are made by fund management companies to inform all of their investors about a change in management.
- Fund manager exit
- UK mutual fund performance