By and large, the first three months of 2019 have been very positive for investors in our 2019 Rated Funds. These are split into 15 easy-to-understand asset groups and are comprised of 201 actively managed funds and investment trusts, plus a further 66 passive index-tracking funds.
JPMorgan Global Growth & Income IT
Jeroen Huysinga is leaving the fund management industry to pursue a career in the charitable sector. Huysinga was the sole manager on this global equity income trust from September 2008 until August 2017, when he was joined by Timothy Woodhouse as co-manager.
A decade ago, in early March 2009, the stockmarket equivalent of blood on the streets was in full flow. Hindsight shows it was a very good time to buy bonds or equities, not to mention real assets such as property and infrastructure. It was the nadir of the global financial crisis and, bar a few bumps on the way, stockmarkets of developed countries have not looked back, particularly in the US, where the benchmark S&P 500 index has gained in excess of 400% in sterling-adjusted terms.
Constructing a diversified portfolio that is well-placed to weather storms and take advantage of future bright spots is no mean feat. That is where Money Observer’s 12 model portfolios aim to help investors reach their financial goals.
Over the past three years to 11 March, investors in Neil Woodford’s flagship LF Woodford UK Equity Income fund (WEIF) have suffered losses of 6%, punctuated by a particularly poor 2018, when the fund was down 16.4%. In contrast, the average UK equity income fund has gained 20% over three years.
Well, that wasn’t much fun for investors: 2018 promised so much but ended up delivering very little, if anything at all. Of all major asset classes referenced by UK investors, only property ended up meaningfully in the black – up around 7%. Cash and gilts returned a little over 0.5%. With a 3.1% loss, global developed markets fared better than commodities, emerging market equities and UK shares, which propped up the asset class performance table with near 10% losses.
What must rank as one of the most hard-hitting, thought-provoking critiques of the investment management industry deserves to be widely read by investors and the firms that serve them. ‘Let’s Talk About Actual Investing’, by Stuart Dunbar, a partner at fund management group Baillie Gifford, explains why the investment industry has lost sight of its original goals; why most “active” investment managers are anything but that; and how short-term business priorities and performance measurements are damaging long-term wealth creation.
The UK equity market lagged international stock markets in the first half of 2018, and it was the same story in the third quarter, with the FTSE All-Share index posting a loss of 0.8 per cent. In contrast, the FTSE World index returned 6.2 per cent in sterling terms.
While the underperformance of UK equities may whet the appetite of more contrarian-minded investors, as far as our model portfolios are concerned, it was a big factor behind eight of the 12 falling short of their relevant FTSE UK Private Investor index benchmark in the three months to 1 October.
Each quarter, Money Observer takes a look at our active Rated Fund list, providing a breakdown on a sector-by-sector basis.