10 things you should know about our approach to global investing
Learn about American Funds commitment to global investing and our research process.
We are global trailblazers. Our commitment to the best long-term interests of our shareholders led us to search for opportunities outside the U.S. borders more than 50 years ago. Some of our analysts were the first U.S. professionals to visit certain companies outside the United States.
We rely on firsthand research. We believe you need to know a company to determine its true worth and long-term potential. Our research process includes meeting with company management, thoroughly reviewing financial statements, making on-site visits, and even talking with a company’s suppliers, buyers, bankers and competitors to gain an objective, well-rounded view.
We take a bottom-up approach. We focus primarily on companies, not industries or regions — and visit almost every company under consideration for or in a fund’s portfolio.
Our analysts have longevity. We view investment analysis as a career. As a result, it’s not uncommon for our analysts to have known several successive CEOs at the companies they cover.
Our investment professionals come from 53 countries and speak more than 40 languages1. Many of our investment professionals live in or hail from the same countries as the companies in which we invest. This diversity and local perspective give us an edge in understanding political, social and cultural nuances.
Our portfolio managers average 26 years of experience1. More than half were in the investment industry before the October 1987 crash, and 9% experienced the 1973–74 bear market.
Our long-term approach has helped us maintain our consistent investment style over the years. We seek to buy securities at reasonable prices relative to their prospects and hold them for the long term. To encourage a long-term investment approach, compensation paid to our investment professionals is heavily influenced by investment results over rolling four- and eight-year periods.
Our funds reflect our global commitment. We believe in the value of global investing so strongly that all of the equity funds we’ve introduced since 1973 invest a significant portion of their assets in companies and issuers based outside the United States.
We have a strong presence as a global investor. As of December 31, 2013, the more than 40 American Funds represented more than $1.2 trillion in investments, including more than $350 billion in stocks and more than $30 billion in bonds from companies and issuers located outside the United States.
Our investment decisions are consistently tied to global research. With events around the world affecting companies no matter where they are located, we place global research at the core of every investment decision we make.
Our organization manages equity assets through three investment groups. These groups make investment and proxy voting decisions independently. Fixed-income investment professionals provide fixed-income research and investment management across our organization; however, for securities with equity characteristics, they act solely on behalf of one of the three equity investment groups. Investment professional information is as of January 1, 2014.