Morningstar, Inc. (NASDAQ:MORN) created a new award to recognize the performance of investment managers who manage assets outside the traditional equity or fixed-income style box of the independent investment research provider. Morningstar has recently released its list of nominees for Domestic Stock, International Stock, and Fixed-Income Fund Manager of the Year.

MorningStar logo

This year, Morningstar, Inc. (NASDAQ:MORN) is introducing the Alternatives Fund Manager of the Year award. According to independent investment research firm, there are 361 alternative mutual funds in different categories as of December 17.

The alternative mutual funds invest in different asset classes, illiquid and take long or short positions.

The three nominees for the Morningstar Alternatives Fund Manager of the Year include:

• Michael Aronstein from Mainstay Marketfield (MUTF:MFLDX)- He was a former manager of global investment strategy of Merrill Lynch. He also served as president of Comstock Partners. He became chief investment officer of Oscar Gruss and Son. And established the Mainstay Marketfield in 2007. Over the past three years, the mutual fund received a five-star rating from Morningstar. Under his management, the mutual fund generated 11.6 percent return year-to-date. It is one of 29 out of 83 mutual funds under its category survived the financial crisis from 2007 to 2009.

• Team from Calamos Market Neutral Income (MUTF:CVSIX)- The team delivered 5.6 percent return year-to-date. The mutual fund had been in business for the past 20 years, and a recipient of the Bronze Morningstar Analyst Rating. The managers of the fund include John Calamos Sr., John Calamos Jr., John Hillenbrand, Steve Klouda, Jeff Scudieri, Jon Vacko, Christopher Hartman, Joe Wysocki, and Gary Black.

• Team from TFS Market Neutral (MUTF:TFSMX)- The management team of the fund include Eric Newman, Richard and Kevin Gates, Larry Eiben, Chao Chen, and Yan Liu. They were able to generate 6.5 percent return year-to-date. TFS Market Neutral was the only alternative mutual fund awarded with the Gold Morningstar Analyst Rating. The fund consistently outperformed its category on the risk-adjusted basis. Its long-term risk-adjusted performance received a five star rating from Morningstar over the past three and five years.

H/T Brendan Conway