And the winner of the Mixed Asset Higher Risk award is...
1-year return: 9.4%
3-year return: 50.9%
TB Wise Multi Asset Growth is the clear winner of the Best Mixed Asset Higher Risk award, with consistently better and lower-risk returns than rivals.
It might be a relatively small fund at just £57 million, but it is hugely diversified. Its 38 holdings mask far greater diversity, as this is a portfolio of funds and investment trusts with thousands of underlying holdings between them. Through these funds it can hold shares, fixed interest, commercial property and alternatives in any combination, anywhere in the world.
Tony Yarrow, who founded Wise Investment (now Wise Funds) in 1992, is one of three portfolio managers. Vincent Ropers joined him as co-manager in 2017 and Philip Matthews in 2018. They focus on high-quality funds and investment trusts. They are value investors, an approach that leads them away from fashionable and consensual markets and sectors and makes the fund less correlated with its peers.
They believe the economy is in late cycle as opposed to end of cycle, and have been adding risk at the margin at a regional level (emerging markets, China, Europe and UK smaller companies) as well as at a sector level (technology). Around 16% of the portfolio is in defensive investments.
They continue to look for idiosyncratic opportunities and have recently added to investment trusts trading on attractive discounts to their net asset values. These include private equity trust ICG Enterprise and Woodford Patient Capital, both of which are in the fund’s top 10 holdings, and Ecofin Global Utilities & Infrastructure Trust.
Woodford has fallen from grace since his trust investing in exciting early-stage businesses launched to great fanfare four years ago, but Yarrow and his co-managers are not afraid to invest in areas that others are avoiding.
HIGHLY COMMENDED FUND
Royal London Sustainable World is back to claim another of our gongs after a brief hiatus.
This fund won Best Mixed Asset Higher Risk Fund award in 2015 and was highly commended in 2016. It has also won the Best Ethical/SRI Mixed Asset fund award for six years running – from 2014 to 2019. It has been a Rated Fund every year since our shortlist began in 2013.
Investors in it have consistently benefited their portfolio as well as society by investing in innovative companies having a positive impact, including those showing leadership in environmental, social and governance management.
Mike Fox, its manager since inception in 2009, argues that such an approach reduces investment risk and makes the fund less volatile than competitors with a wider remit.
Coming out on top by venturing where others fear to tread