Fiona Hamilton

Miner raises payout in tough year

BlackRock World Mining Trust (BRWM) aims to maximise total returns from investing in a globally diversified portfolio of mining and metal assets. Its report for the year to 31 December 2018 shows shareholders’ assets of £685 million.

Throgmorton trims losses via shorts

BlackRock Throgmorton Trust (THRG) invests in UK mid- and small-cap companies for long-term growth and attractive total returns. Its annual report for the year to 30 November 2018 shows shareholders’ assets of £380 million.

Income payouts raise Latin America profile

BlackRock Latin American Trust (BRLA) targets long-term growth and total returns primarily through investing in quoted securities in Latin America. Its report for the year to 31 December 2018 shows shareholders’ funds of $255 million (£204 milllion).

Will Landers, who had managed BRLA since March 2006, left BlackRock in December 2018. Sam Vecht and Ed Kuczma succeeded him as co-managers.

Investment trusts with plenty of potential for adventurous investors

Most Asia Pacific ex Japan trusts are currently less than fully invested, and it is not hard to see why. China is the dominant regional economy, and its confrontation with the US over trade terms, forced technology transfers and state interference threatens to exacerbate the deceleration in its growth, with companies in neighbouring states at risk of being caught in the cross-fire.

Rising oil prices are another problem for a region that is a substantial importer, as is a strong dollar, given that a lot of Asian borrowing is dollar-denominated.

The Scottish method yields outstanding dividends

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.

Out-of favour opportunities increase for Temple Bar

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.