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 BOSTON, Aug. 6 /PRNewswire/ -- John Hancock Mutual Funds announced today that John Hancock Special Equities Fund, a small-cap stock fund, will close indefinitely to new investors after the close of business on Sept. 3, 1993. The fund will continue to take subsequent investments from existing shareholders.
 Closing a mutual fund is a defensive measure a company takes to protect the interests of the fund's current shareholders. John Hancock Special Equities follows a disciplined strategy in picking small stocks. As the fund grows bigger, it becomes more difficult to stay fully invested in stocks that meet its strict criteria.
 "The fund is closing to preserve the integrity of its management style," says Michael P. DiCarlo, portfolio manager for the last five and a half years. "It has grown steadily over the last several months and has now reached a critical size. Closing Special Equities will give me the freedom to continue investing in the types of stocks that have contributed to its performance."
 The $261 million fund was the number one small company stock fund for the three- and five-year periods ending July 31, 1993. Over the last five years, it has posted an average annual return of 24.95 percent vs. 14.22 percent for the average small company stock fund, according to Lipper Analytical Services.
 John Hancock Mutual Funds manages more than $8.5 billion for individual and institutional investors nationwide.
 NOTE: As of June 30, 1993, the average annualized return on Class A shares for the 1-, 5- year and since inception in 1985, were 46.39 percent, 22.63 percent and 15.16 percent, respectively, and reflect payment of the maximum 5 percent sales charge. Cumulative total return since inception of March 1, 1993 for Class B shares was 11.29 percent and reflects the maximum 4 percent contingent deffered sales charge.
 -0- 8/6/93
 /CONTACT: Bill Benintende, John Hancock Mutual Funds, 617-375-1883/

CO: John Hancock Mutual Funds ST: Massachusetts IN: FIN SU:

JL-CM -- NE004 -- 0282 08/06/93 11:09 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Aug 6, 1993
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