Lesley Marks

Manager expects small caps to lead in an eventual recovery.

Diana Cawfield 29 May, 2009 | 6:00PM
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With a decade of experience in navigating the swings in small-cap stocks, Lesley Marks believes the next move in this market segment will be up.

"After going through a year where returns are down 40 to 50%," says Marks, "it's evident that this would be an attractive time to look at small-cap investing. They do tend to lead in a recovery, and because they are the most beaten-up names in valuation, you tend to get the best performance out of small-cap names in a recovery as well."

Marks, vice-president and portfolio manager, Canadian equities, at Jones Heward Investment Counsel Inc., has led the $210-millionBMO Special Equity since joining the firm in October 1998. She is a member of the equity team consisting of five other managers and one assistant portfolio manager, headed by veteran Michael Stanley.

Last summer, Marks moved into more liquid, mid-cap names to mitigate the impact of the downturn. Currently, the portfolio holds about a 50-50 split between small-cap and mid-cap companies -- "definitely higher in our range of mid-cap than we've ever been," she says.

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About Author

Diana Cawfield

Diana Cawfield  Diana Cawfield is an award-winning writer who has been a regular Morningstar contributor since 2000. Her numerous publication credits include the Toronto StarAdvisor's Edge and Chatelaine, as well as the Canadian Securities Institute's online educational services.

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