The Potomac Funds Changes "Direxion"
The Potomac Funds, a provider of leveraged index and alternative-class mutual fund products, recently announced a new name, Direxion Funds, as part of a strategic plan in which it also announced a new executive team and introduction of several new 2.5x leveraged index funds.
The firm also established new executive offices in Boston. Investment management and trading operations remain in New York.
"It‚s an important time to be in the leveraged index and alternative-class mutual fund market, to help investment advisors grow their businesses and to transition the entire sector from a small entrepreneurial segment of the fund universe to a professionally managed, well-recognized and fully utilized category," says new Chief Executive Officer Ron Fernandes.
On the product side, the company filed and received approval, effective May 1, for approximately 30 new funds, which will be rolled out during the year. By the end of 2006 Direxion Funds will offer approximately 50 funds, including up to 16 Bull and Bear 2.5x leveraged index funds–including domestic equity, international and fixed-income funds. Direxion Funds will also expand its sales team, adding experienced wholesalers to serve investment advisors and building a new sales desk to support them.
Direxion Funds has approximately $1 billion in assets under management. For more information, please call 877-437-9363 or visit

Fidelity Launches Value International Fund
Fidelity Investments has launched the Fidelity International Value Fund, with retail and Advisor share classes.
The fund will normally be broadly diversified across different countries and regions of the world. Its benchmark will be the MSCI EAFE Value Index.
Fidelity International Value Fund is available directly to investors and through advisors at banks, insurance companies and broker-dealers via Fidelity Advisor International Value Fund. For more information visit

Vanguard Offers New Retirement Funds
Vanguard is adding five Target Retirement Funds, allowing investors to select a fund that more closely matches their expected retirement date.
Vanguard now offers 11 Target funds, which are broadly diversified "fund-of-funds" that invest primarily in stock and bond index funds and gradually shift to a more conservative asset allocation as the target date approaches. The minimum initial investment is $3,000. Weighted expense ratios range from 0.20% to 0.21%. For more information visit

Support Platform For SMAs Introduced
Pershing LLC has launched Managed Account Direct, an open architecture platform to support separately managed accounts.
Offered through Pershing Advisor Solutions LLC, Managed Account Direct is specifically tailored to meet the needs of RIAs. It allows experienced separately managed accounts users to work with their current portfolio managers, have their own in-house research teams and due diligence processes, and outsource day-to-day operational processes.
Additional information is available at

Whole Life Offered
For Seniors
Philadelphia American Life of Houston has launched a guaranteed-issue Single Premium Whole Life policy, "Advantage Life." Designed as a wealth transfer vehicle for seniors, there is no underwriting. The minimum premium is $5,000 and the maximum face amount is $100,000. For more information, call 877-306-1836 or visit

Real Estate Fund Changes Approved
Shareholders of Wilmington Multi-Manager Real Estate Securities Fund have approved a proposal to broaden the fund‚s investment parameters and change its name to Wilmington Multi-Manager Real Asset Fund, Wilmington Trust has announced.
The fund expects to invest in a diversified mix of inflation-linked bonds, real estate-related securities and natural resource/commodity-related securities. Prior to the conversion, the fund‚s focused solely on real estate-related securities.
For more information, please visit