Fans of infrastructure funds, attracted by their steadily rising yields and low NAV volatility, have an increasingly diverse choice thanks to the launch of six new investment trusts over the past two years.
The Scottish Investment Trust (SCIN) invests in international equities for above-average long-term returns and dividend growth ahead of UK inflation. SCIN’s report and accounts for the year to 31 October 2018 shows shareholders’ assets of £715 million, after deducting long-term borrowings of £83.8 million.
Alasdair McKinnon has been the trust’s lead manager since July 2014 and has introduced a high-conviction, global contrarian approach. The portfolio has been concentrated down to 50 holdings, focused on unfashionable and unpopular companies ripe for improvement.
Temple Bar Investment Trust (TMPL) targets long-term total returns in excess of the FTSE All-Share index. It invests mostly in constituents of the FTSE 350 index. TMPL’s annual report for the year to 31 December 2018 shows shareholders’ assets of £802 million. Its dividend has been raised every year since 1983.
Alastair Mundy, who heads Investec Asset Management’s UK Value team, has been manager since 2002. Peter Lowery, who has worked closely with him since 2003, is deputy manager.
Both our trust portfolios recovered well over the three months to 1 April: the conservative portfolio matched the rise in the FTSE AllShare index and the adventurous portfolio pulled ahead of it slightly.
Winner: JPMorgan Emerging Markets
JPMorgan Emerging Markets Investment Trust (JMG) retains this award. It is one of the largest global emerging market trusts and it has been exceptional for its management stability, relatively steady returns and low portfolio turnover.