Columbia Shutters Strategic Cash Portfolio

Columbia Management, a unit of Bank of America Corp., is shuttering its $12-billion Strategic Cash portfolio saying major institutional clients headed for the exits because of losses on complex asset-backed securities.

A Wall Street Journal report said the Strategic Cash portfolio had $40 billion in assets a few months ago.

The fund was an enhanced money fund, a short-term investment pool that offered higher yields than more traditional cash investment offering, according to the WSJ. However, unlike traditional money-market funds, the Strategic Cash fund did not guarantee it would maintain a $1-per-share net asset value, even though the fund was managed toward achieving that goal.

The fund’s current net asset value is $0.994 per share, officials said, according to the Journal.

Large investors will be redeemed “in kind,” which means they will be handed their share of the underlying securities. Smaller investors can take out cash, the news report said.

The Strategic Cash portfolio was open to investors with a minimum of $25 million.