TMBAM sets US focus with launch of two funds

TMB Asset Management is relying on a US economic recovery this year by introducing two funds to invest in that country, said chief executive Somjin Sornpaisran.

He said this year, the US GDP should reach 2.8%, up from 2% in 2012.

TMBAM's two funds are TMB US500 Equity Index Fund and TMB US500 Equity Index RMF. Both invest in the iShare S&P500 Index ETF Funds listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

The master fund invests in the S&P 500 index, which comprises the 500 largest publicly traded companies by market capitalisation, as determined by Standard & Poor's.

Most of these companies are listed on the NYSE and Nasdaq. They are good indicators of the US economy and include such companies as Apple, Google, Starbucks, Coca-Cola, Ford, and Nike. He said the S&P 500 index has a combined market value of US$13.8 trillion, representing 26% of the world equity markets.

"We are launching these funds as we believe investors will be interested in diversifying into global companies," said Mr Somjin.

The master fund has assets under management of $36 billion.

"The US property sector has recovered and housing prices are increasing. Americans have more to spend and that will push consumption growth. This means its listed firms' earnings will increase as well," he said.

Bloomberg forecasts the S&P 500 will reach 1,630.28 points over the next 12 months, up from 1,494.81 points now.

S&P 500 companies have great potential to record profit growth of 9.71% this year and 11.51% next year, said Mr Somjin.

These companies have earnings upside, with strong balance sheets and low price-to-earnings ratios.