Bloomberg News

Fifth Third’s Richter Says Cable Investments Good in Tough Time

Published September 9, 2009 on Bloomberg Terminal

By Ken Prewitt and Tania Haas
Sept. 9 (Bloomberg) — Scott Richter, portfolio manager at Fifth Third Asset Management, which has about $21 billion in assets under management, discusses U.S. markets after the government takeover of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.
He spoke in an interview from Cleveland.

On signals in the global economy:
“What it’s implying is that the markets are starting to digest the global slowdown. We started, and the rest of the world is following. So I think that’s showing up in the commodity prices.”

On whether investors should stay away from commodities:
“It depends on your time frame. In the short run, it looks a little precarious. But in the longer term, with China and India continuing to develop, I think there still is a bullish story.”

On whether the U.S. economy is going to escape a recession:
“We’re very fragile and slow right now. I think the policies that have been put in place, and the accommodations that the Fed has made, hopefully, will work in time.”

On whether his firm is investing defensively:
“We are. We’re playing defense. We have a value bias, and the sectors that we are looking right now are staples, media, health care and incrementally, energy. Media — specifically, we are looking at cable and broadcast, and we like the cash flows there, we like the defensive nature of those revenues in a tough
time, and in a specific case, we like the attractive audience of the specific stocks we are looking at.”

–With reporting by Alberto Riva in New York. Editors: JoAnne
Norton, Eric Morse