Amana Income Fund Celebrates 25th Anniversary, Becoming World's Second Largest Islamic Equity Mutual Fund
Bellingham, Wash., USA (September 6, 2011) — Saturna Capital Corporation, a U.S. investment management company and adviser to nine mutual funds is celebrating the 25th anniversary of its first client, Amana Income Fund.
Since its inception in 1986, Saturna's flagship Amana Income Fund has grown to $1.3 billion and is now the second largest public equity mutual fund in the world managed according to the principles of Islamic finance. Its sibling fund, Amana Growth, is the largest such fund at $1.9 billion.
Amana Income's 25-year run is rather rare in the U.S. mutual fund industry. Out of the roughly 7500 mutual funds currently in operation, only about 300, or 4%, have been around as long as Amana Income. Research shows that the closure rate for U.S. mutual funds throughout the 1990s was around 36%, rising to 56% in the 2000s. Funds that fail to attract investors, often due to poor relative performance or distribution strategies, are regularly merged or liquidated by their managers.
Nicholas Kaiser has been portfolio manager of Amana Income for 21 years and has twice been nominated as Morningstar's Domestic-Stock Manager of the Year. He founded Saturna Capital Corporation in 1989, and serves as its Chairman. He also serves as Chief Investment Officer, leading a steadily growing investment team, which includes Amana's deputy portfolio manager Monem Salam. The ten-member portfolio team is based in Saturna's Bellingham, WA headquarters and branch office in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Saturna's conservative, value-oriented management style developed by Kaiser during his 41 years in the investment field meshes well with Amana's rigorous Islamic mandates. As a result of the funds' award-winning long-term performance the Amana funds found appeal outside of the Muslim community and now have more than 100,000 investors throughout the United States.
“We've spent the past 25 years developing and refining our security screening process to select high-quality, value-oriented stocks that adhere to the principles of Islamic finance,” Kaiser explains. “What this means for our shareowners is that we heavily scrutinize the operations of the companies we invest in, and we know their balance sheets and the sources of their revenue.”
He added, “Amana's Islamic mandates impose a high level of discipline on our investment process. Our shareowners — many if not most of whom are non-Muslim — know and appreciate this. It's a very systematic and deliberate process, to ensure that each one of our investments not only meets or exceeds multiple criteria, but continues to do so throughout its holding period.”
The idea for a mutual fund for Muslim Americans originated in 1984 with two Muslim businessmen interested serving their community. They approached Kaiser to launch Amana Income Fund, with the objectives of current income and preservation of capital.
Amana Mutual Funds Trust, consisting of the Amana Income (AMANX), Amana Growth (AMAGX) and Amana Developing World Funds (AMDWX), is designed for Americans who wish to invest according to Islamic principles.
About Saturna Capital Corporation
“Values-Based Global Equity Managers”
Saturna Capital Corporation, established in 1989 in Bellingham, Washington, USA, is the investment adviser and administrator to $3.5 billion in assets, including nine mutual funds, private accounts for families, businesses, and endowments.
Saturna Capital is adviser to the Amana Mutual Funds Trust, which includes Amana Growth Fund, Amana Income Fund, and Amana Developing World Fund. The Amana Funds are managed according to the principles of Islamic finance.
Saturna Capital is also adviser to the Saturna Investment Trust, consisting of six funds: Sextant Growth (U.S. domestic equities), Sextant International (international equities), Sextant Core (bonds and equities), Sextant Bond Income (long-term bonds), Sextant Short-Term Bond, and the Idaho Tax-Exempt Fund (Idaho municipal bonds).
Saturna Capital has three wholly-owned subsidiaries. Saturna Sdn. Bhd., located in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, specializes in investment advisory services for Asian individuals and institutions. Saturna Brokerage Services, located in Bellingham, Washington, USA, provides general discount brokerage services and distributes Saturna's affiliated mutual funds. Saturna Trust Company, headquartered in Reno, Nevada, USA, provides trust services to families, charities, trusts, estates and retirement plans.