The 20 Worst Equity Fund Managers Of 2010

Kevin LandisKevin Landis

The worst stock fund of 2010 plunged an embarrassing 41.42%, tanking in comparison with the S&P 500 returns in 2010 of 15.06%.That means you could’ve earned 15% by just investing in a low-fee ETF and taking a nap for the rest of the year.

Instead, the managers who made this unfortunate list invested in stocks like Aeropostale, Wells Fargo, Netflix and Siemens — and they lost big time.

Of course it would be myopic to look at mutual funds in terms of their returns just for 2010. Some managers, like the Rydex Russell fund’s Michael Dellapa, Ryan Harder and Michael Byrum, for example, made the top 20 and the bottom 20 too.

But another fund manager, Rajendra Prasad was a repeat offender, having made 2009’s bottom rung too, so it’s hard to have sympathy for him.

Here’s what investors should know.

UPDATE – The rankings come from independent data provided by Morningstar.

#20 Mark Coffelt

Fund: Empiric Core Equity A

Annual return 2010: -0.07%

S&P benchmark: 15.06%

Size: $47.82 mil

Top listings: Aeropostale, Inc., Endo Pharmaceutical Holdings, Inc., Forest Laboratories, Inc., World Acceptance Corporation and TJX Companies.

Source: Morningstar

#19 Zehrid Osmani and Nigel Bolton

Fund: BlackRock EuroFund Inv B

Annual return 2010: -0.66%

S&P benchmark: 15.06%

Size: $357.32 mil

Top listings: Novartis AG, Telefonica, S.A. ADR, British American Tobacco PLC, Deutsche Telekom AG and Sanofi-Aventis.

Source: Morningstar

#18 Joseph Giordano

Fund: Giordano

Annual return 2010: -1.56%

S&P benchmark: 15.06%

Size: $1.65 mil

Top listings: The travellers Companies, Inc., Wells Fargo Company, Raytheon Company, Deere & Company and McDonald's Corporation.

Source: Morningstar

#17 Stephen Rogers

Fund: California Investment Euro Gr & Inc Dir

Annual return 2010: -2.12%

S&P benchmark: 15.06%

Size: $12.76 mil

Top listings: Nestle SA ADR, Novartis AG ADR, HSBC Holdings PLC ADR, Vodafone Group PLC ADR and BP Plc ADR.

Source: Morningstar

#16 Vipin Ahuja and Andreas Fruschk

Fund: Allianz RCM Global EcoTrends A

Annual return 2010: -2.43%

S&P benchmark: 15.06%

Size: $69.29 mil

Top listings: Vestas Wind Systems A/S, Novozymes, Stericycle, Inc., Cree, Inc. and Gamesa Corporacion Technologica.

Source: Morningstar

#15 Yon Perullo, Scott Klimo, David Whittall and Mark Kress

Fund: Rydex|SGI International Long Short Sel A

Annual return 2010: -2.78%

S&P benchmark: 15.06%

Size: $9.49 mil

Top listings: Apple, Inc., MasterCard Incorporated A, Sony Financial Holdings Inc., Kao Corporation and Exxaro Resources Ltd.

Source: Morningstar

#14 David Kingsley, James Davolos, Murray Stahl and Peter B. Doyle

Fund: Kinetics Water Infrastructure Adv A*

Annual return 2010: -4.80%

S&P benchmark: 15.06%

Size: $24.20 mil

Top listings: Ameron International, Inc., URS Corporation, Geberit AG, First American Prime Obligation I and ESCO Technologies, Inc.

Source: Morningstar

* UPDATE - Benchmarked against The Rydex Europe 1.25X the fund performed as it was supposed to. The ratings of the equity funds were calculated independently by Morningstar using their own measures.

#13 Kevin Landis

Fund: Firsthand Technology Value

Annual return 2010: -5.74%

S&P benchmark: 15.06%

Size: $137.30 mil

Top listings: Netflix, Inc., Solopower, Series A, Verifone Hldgs 144A, Intel Corporation and Intevac, Inc.

Source: Morningstar

#12 Eric Bjorgen, David H. Kurzman and Steven Leuthold

Fund: Leuthold Global Clean Tech Instl

Annual return 2010: -5.96%

S&P benchmark: 15.06%

Size: $26.30 mil

Top listings: Fidelity Instl MM Fds Government I, Trina Solar Limited ADR, China Valves Technology Inc., Insituform Technologies A and LSB Industries, Inc.

Source: Morningstar

#11 Nicolas Huber

Fund: DWS Climate Change A

Annual return 2010: -6.48%

S&P benchmark: 15.06%

Size: $39.22 mil

Top listings: Clean Energy Fuels Corporation, Central Cash Management Fd Central Cash Management Fd, A123 Systems, Inc., Wacker Chemie AG and Johnson Controls, Inc.

Source: Morningstar

#10 David J. Schoenwald and Maurice L. Schoenwald

Fund: New Alternatives

Annual return 2010: -7.26%

S&P benchmark: 15.06%

Size: $235.24 mil

Top listings: American Water Works Co Inc., Edf Energies Nouvelles, Schneider Electric, Iberdrola Energias Renovables SA and Abengoa, S.A.

Source: Morningstar

#9 Vincent Costa

Fund: ING Euro STOXX 50 Index I

Annual return 2010: -8.64%

S&P benchmark: 15.06%

Size: $878.67 mil

Top listings: Total SA, Banco Santander SA ADR, Telefonica, S.A. ADR, Siemens AG ADR and Sanofi-Aventis.

Source: Morningstar

#8 Kevin Landis

Fund: Firsthand Alternative Energy

Annual return 2010: -9.24%

S&P benchmark: 15.06%

Size: $6.30 mil

Top listings: A123 Systems, Inc., JA Solar Holdings Co., ADR, Meyer Burger Technology Ag, Gt Solar International, Inc. and Vestas Wind Systems A/S.

Source: Morningstar

#7 Michael Dellapa, Ryan Harder and Michael Byrum

Fund: Rydex Europe 1.25x Strategy H

Annual return 2010: -11.44%

S&P benchmark: 15.06%

Size: $26.06 mil

Top listings: Novartis AG ADR, Total SA ADR, HSBC Holdings PLC ADR, France Telecom SA ADR and Siemens AG.

Source: Morningstar

#6 Howard Rubin, Alexander llyasov and Todd Johnson

Fund: ProFunds UltraJapan Inv*

Annual return 2010: -16.31%

S&P benchmark: 15.06%

Size: $19.15 mil

Top listings: NIKKEI 225 FUTURE DEC 10

Source: Morningstar

*UPDATE - This is an international L/S fund. The ratings of the equity funds were calculated independently by Morningstar using their own measures.

#5 Stephen Parr

Fund: The USX China C

Annual return 2010: -18.86%

S&P benchmark: 15.06%

Size: $14.61 mil

Top listings: China North East Petroleum Holdings, Ltd., Zhongpin Inc., Yuhe International, Inc., China Valves Technology Inc. and Harbin Electric, Inc.

Source: Morningstar

#4 Jens Peers, Treasa Chonghaile and Colm O'Connor

Fund: Calvert Global Alternative Energy A

Annual return 2010: -20.12%

S&P benchmark: 15.06%

Size: $174.03 mil

Top listings: Iberdrola Energias Renovables SA, MEMC Electronic Materials,
First Solar, Inc., SMA Solar Technology AG and Hansen Transmissions International NV.

Source: Morningstar

#3 Edward Guinness

Fund: Guinness Atkinson Alternative Energy

Annual return 2010: -21.90%

S&P benchmark: 15.06%

Size: $35.65 mil

Top listings: ReneSola Ltd ADR, LDK Solar Company, Ltd. ADR, JA Solar Holdings Co., ADR, Trina Solar Limited ADR and LSB Industries, Inc.

Source: Morningstar

#2 Howard Rubin, Robert Parker and Todd Johnson

Fund: ProFunds UltraShort China Inv

Annual return 2010: -39.54%

S&P benchmark: 15.06%

Size: $5.66 mil

Top listings: N/A

Source: Morningstar

#1 Rajendra Prasad

Fund: Prasad Growth

Annual return 2010: -41.42%

S&P benchmark: 15.06%

Size: $322,988

Top listings: Sify Tech, China Nepstar Chain Drugstore Ltd. ADR, Satyam Computer Services, Ltd., China Sky One Medical, Inc. and China Digital TV Holding Co., Ltd. ADR.

Source: Morningstar

All of them owe a big thanks to these 20 for keeping investors interested in the mutual fund industry...

Because they're certainly not doing it any favours.

Click here to meet the 20 best stock fund managers of 2010 >

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