Aberdeen Standard Asia Focus PLC
New for 2019. A potential turnaround tale
This trust is not for the fainthearted. It has gearing of more than 12% of its net assets and invests in volatile Asian markets. The trust has found itself at the bottom of the performance league table, but a recent revamp gives us confidence in its future. It replaces the underperforming Scottish Oriental Smaller Companies.
In November 2018 Aberdeen Asian Smaller Companies investment trust changed tack and was renamed Aberdeen Standard Asia Focus. It retains its focus on small companies, but it will be more concentrated, with the number of holdings falling from 80 to 60, 30 of which will be considered ‘core’.
Markuz Jaffe, an analyst at Cantor Fitzgerald says: “ is has helped further differentiate the fund from its peers and other Asian equity funds managed by Aberdeen Standard Investments, and could prove interesting when emerging markets, notably China, have been out of favour for much of 2018.”
Veteran Asia investor Hugh Young has been promoted to lead manager. The trust had previously been managed by a five strong team, including Young, in Singapore.
Young believes small firms in Asia, with their greater exposure to domestic markets, provide investors with a comparatively safe harbour from the trade disputes and currency fluctuations that have been dominating the news from the region. He likes quality companies that are well positioned to benefit from emerging technological trends and growing demand for better-quality products and services.
The trust has recently traded at a discount to net assets of 17%, which compares favourably with -10% or less during most of 2017, potentially offering investors a good Hugh Young entry point.
Narrative and ratings content all as of January 2019.See all Money Observer rated funds
|Bank OCBC NISP Tbk||3.85 %|
|John Keells Holdings PLC||3.47 %|
|Asian Terminals Inc||3.06 %|
|Cebu Holdings Inc||2.95 %|
|AEM Holdings Ltd||2.91 %|
|Oriental Holdings Bhd||2.70 %|
|M P Evans Group PLC||2.67 %|
|Hana Microelectronics PCL||2.64 %|
|PT Ultrajaya Milk Industry & Trading Co Tbk||2.62 %|
|Dah Sing Financial Holdings Ltd||2.59 %|
|Asia - Emerging||67.76 %|
|Asia - Developed||26.59 %|
|Financial Services||19.86 %|
|Consumer Cyclical||17.29 %|
|Real Estate||12.16 %|
|Consumer Defensive||10.87 %|
Pruksa Iamthongthong is an Investment Director on the Asian Equities Team at Aberdeen Standard Investments. Pruksa joined Aberdeen Asset Management in 2007. Pruksa graduated with a BA in Business Administration from Chulalongkorn University, Thailand and is a CFA® charterholder.
Gabriel joined ASI in 2008 as part of the London-based Global Emerging Markets Equities team and transferred to Asian Equities in 2018. Gabriel graduated with a MA (Hons) in Land Economy from Selwyn College, Cambridge University and is a CFA Charterholder.
Hugh Young is Managing Director − Asia for Aberdeen Standard Investments. He was formerly a board director and head of Investment for Legacy Aberdeen (before its merger with Standard Life plc). Mr. Young joined Legacy Aberdeen in 1985 to manage Asian equities form its London office, having started his investment career in 1980. He founded Singapore-based Aberdeen asset Management Asia Limited in 1992. Mr. Young is a director of a number of Legacy Aberdeen subsidiary companies and of investment trusts and funds managed by Aberdeen Standard Investments. Mr. Young graduated with a BA (Hons) in Politics from Exeter University.
Data provided by Morningstar.
The Content is only for your general information and use and is not intended to address your particular requirements. The Content does not constitute any form of advice, recommendation or arrangement by Money Observer and is not intended to be relied upon by you in making (or refraining from making) any specific investment or other decisions. Appropriate independent advice should be obtained before making any such decision.
This information is sourced from our partner Morningstar. We believe the data to be correct however you should take care in using any information.
You should be aware that prices may fall as well as rise and that the income derived can go down as well as up. When buying or selling any investment that fluctuates in price or value you may get back less than you invested. Past performance is not necessarily a guide to future performance.