Fidelity Turns to Putnam Mgr. as CIO

August 15, 2005 ( - As part of a restructuring of the world's largest fund firm's money management unit, Fidelity Investments has tapped a former Putnam Investments manager as one of three chief investment officers.

Eric Wetlaufer, who once managed Putnam’s Vista fund, one of the money manager’s best-known offerings, joined Fidelity earlier this month, Fidelity spokeswoman Anne Crowley told Reuters. Fidelity also named company veterans to the other two chief investment officer positions.

Philip Bullen, who had been head of Fidelity’s international and institutional investment groups, now oversees the company’s large cap, core, capital appreciation and international funds. Bruce Herring, who until recently managed US stock funds sold to foreign investors, is in charge of value, growth, small-cap and mid-cap groups.

Boston-based Fidelity introduced the position of chief investment officer as part of a series of changes designed to improve the division’s performance. Since May, the company has reorganized the money management unit and appointed Stephen Jonas to succeed Abigail Johnson, the chairman’s daughter and the privately held firm’s biggest stakeholder, who had held the job for four years, according to the report.

At Fidelity, unlike other firms, chief investment officers do not manage money but “manage people and the process of portfolio managers and stock researchers working together,” Crowley told Reuters.

Wetlaufer had been a chief investment officer at Boston-based Putnam, the money management unit of insurance broker Marsh & McLennan Cos. until 2003.