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The world's largest solid gold brick, weighing 220 kg, sits at the Jinguashi Gold Museum in Ruifang, Taiwan

SAM YEH

When it comes to gold bullion funds, the "me-too" trend is in full swing.

Mackenzie Financial Corp. became the latest player on Thursday to launch a fund investing in gold as the profile of the yellow metal glittered brightly last month when it hit fresh highs over $1200 (U.S.) per ounce before retreating.

Mackenzie Gold Bullion Class will invest 80 to 100 per cent of its assets in gold bullion or gold certificates. It can also invest in precious metals like silver, platinum or palladium, and stocks of companies that produce or supply precious metals.

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The Mackenzie fund is a "convenient and secure way for investors to gain exposure to the price appreciation potential, inflation protection and diversification benefits of gold bullion," said David Feather, president of Mackenzie's fund arm.

Lead manager is Benoit Gervais who also runs Mackenzie Universal Precious Metals Fund. The gold bullion fund will charge a management fee of 1.85 per cent and fixed administration fee of 0.34 per cent for its A series. See prospectus.

The Mackenzie fund appears to be somewhat similar to Dynamic Strategic Gold Class that was started last year. The Dynamic Fund can invest in gold bullion, gold stocks and other precious metals too.

Recently, Sprott Asset Management Inc., which also launched a gold bullion fund last year, filed a prospectus recently to start Sprott Physical Gold Trust, a closed-end gold bullion fund to be listed in Canada and the United States. See Fund Watch blog.

Within the mutual fund world, Bullion Management Group Inc. used to have the field to itself in the bullion niche with its BMG BullionFund investing equally in physical gold, silver and platinum.

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