Toreador Core Fund Ranked High by Kiplinger

Sep 20, 2013 No Comments by

FRESNO – Toreador Research and Trading, a Fresno based global finance firm, recently had its Large Capitalization Core Fund, ticker TORLX, recognized by Kiplinger as one of the top 10 mutual funds for 2013. Kiplinger, is one of the most respected sources for investment advice and generating financial discussion among individuals.

Rafael Resendes, portfolio manager for the fund, says this ranking is very significant, especially considering there are several thousand mutual funds in the United States.

Rafael Resendes

“The fact that we showed up so well on their matrix or their criteria was really rewarding,” Resendes said.  “I think everybody involved with Toreador should feel really proud about having been recognized by Kiplinger as one of top 10 funds in America, and by extension the world.  It is a very competitive market and that we showed so well is a testament to our rigorous portfolio construction process and fanatical emphasis on research, research, research.”

“It’s interesting that in little Fresno is a global financial firm dishing up some of the best returns in the market,” Resendes added, “As we are proud of saying, we are the biggest 20 person firm in America.”

Toreador works with over 200 of the largest and most sophisticated investment houses and financial advisors across the country through the Applied Finance Group, which Resendes Co-Founded.  Its Core Fund (TORLX) and International Fund, ticker TMRFX, are the only mutual funds based in Fresno.  When asked about local investment advisors that work with Toreador, Resendes said they have developed a strong partnership with Mark Capital, but most advisors in Fresno haven’t had the chance to be exposed to the advanced research techniques Toreador utilizes to evaluate equity securities.  “The financial advisors in Fresno are really nice people, doing a good job servicing their clients, but we believe our advanced research capability and results would help them further enhance their ability to generate more alpha for their clients.” Resendes added that his company so far has concentrated its efforts in California on partnering with investment professionals based in areas with strong wealth management tradition, such as the Bay Area and Los Angeles county. “Fresno hasn’t been a focus of our work, but being a resident here, we welcome the opportunity to help local professionals better understand equity markets and potentially improve returns for their Fresno clients.”

Anyone can invest in the Toreador Core Fund, but its client base tends to be financial advisors.  It has worked out so well that last December Toreador launched a second product, the Toreador International Fund (TMRFX).  Similar to the Core Fund, Toreador’s international offering has been making its way up Morningstar’s international fund rankings, currently ranked among the top 10% of funds in its class YTD.

The Toreador Core Fund launched about six years ago, and currently has over $70 million invested in it.  The Toreador International Fund has $15 million in investment, which amounts to total funds under management in excess of $85 million.

“The rate our assets are growing is really a testament to our process,” Resendes said.

That process is known as the Economic Margin, focuses on what Toreador believes is a firm’s true economic performance rather than its “as-reported” numbers.  Once that is established, a firm’s worth is determined against what the market is paying for it.  The company’s management is then evaluated, and clients are guided through short-term “irrational gyrations” companies sometimes experience.

“We have a disciplined approach to building portfolios, much like Mercedes has about the quality of their cars,” Resendes said.  “Toreador’s investment portfolios are about being systematic, rigorous and repeatable.”

Toreador unveiled three new market cap strategies at their annual investment conference two weeks ago in Las Vegas and Resendes said the review from its advisor clients in attendance was amazing.

When asked about growth plans, Resendes provided an unexpected answer – unlike firms in the financial industry, he is not concerned about rapid growth or absolute growth, and instead he said it is all about quality.

“Sky is the limit – there is only a handful firms that can truly offer the breadth of domestic and international research that we do and the advisors that partner with us realize the huge benefit we offer to their clients.  But for Toreador it is all about building lasting relationships with advisors that can understand and appreciate what we are trying to do so we never have to worry about weak hands forcing selling because of a silly headline. We are not vendors but partners with our clients. We actively deter short-term money from our products with steep redemption fees for short-term trading.  Bottom line for Toreador it is about building lasting relationships that benefit our investors, life is too short for anything else.”

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About the author

James Olinger is a native of the San Joaquin Valley. He graduated from West Hills College in Coalinga, California in 2000 with an associate's degree in liberal arts. He joined Business Street in 2004 as a staff writer, and became the associate editor in 2007. He maintains that position today, writing for Business Street Online in a variety of topics.
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