Ten of the best: managers at the top of their peer groups
Finding the best fund managers is both a science and an art form: you need experience and gut feel...
Another year older, another year wiser (so they say), and coincidentally my first year in finance coming to a close. I’m not a big birthday celebration person: I much prefer to turn off my phone and go for a hike to a void the ‘Happy Birthday’ this and that, but this year my birthday falls on a Monday. There’s no avoiding it.
So instead of hiding from my birthday, I found a few people to celebrate with this year. Ever since I was a little girl my mother used to tell me that I shared a birthday with Princess Diana, so I thought why not see who else I can find to share this day with?
From the founder of Estee Lauder to Missy Elliott, I’ve found a range ‘birthday twins’ over the years. But even more unbelievably there are five Elite Rated managers who started running their fund on my birthday – so this year, this day is as much about them, as it is me.
‘How old would you be if you didn’t know how old you are?’ – Satchel Paige, American baseball player
They say investing is a job for life, but so is fund management if these fund managers are anything to go by. The statistics speak for themselves: 43%* of our 177 Elite Rated funds and trusts have been run by the same manager for at least 10 years, and 8%* for two decades or more.
Below, we take a look at some of our Elite Rated managers who all share a very important date: 1st July – my birthday – as their first day!
Celebrating 28 years this year, Job has been running the trust longer than I’ve been alive! He has managed to increase the trust’s dividend payment every year since then (the trust itself has increased dividends for the past 52 years), and has done so through picking stocks which can grow their dividends, while fending off any competition in their respective market areas. Unfortunately, the current data set does not go back as far as 1991. However, since the end of July 1995 the Trust has returned 501.6%* compared with an average 373.3%* for the average trust in the IT UK Equity Income sector.
Giles, who works alongside co-manager Eustace Santa Barbara, focuses on the wider economy to filter out large numbers of stocks and sectors and now invests in both small and medium-sized companies. The fund has returned 2,913.4%*** over Giles’ tenure, compared with a rise of 521.9%*** for the IA UK Smaller Companies sector average.
Alex, who has been at the fun’s helm since July 2005, invests in the shares of property companies across Europe, including the UK. The manager is incredibly knowledgeable about his sector and has managed to differentiate the fund meaningfully from both its benchmark and its sector. This fund has returned 131.4%^ under Alex, compared with 79.4%^ for the IA Property Other sector average.
Jeremy has been specialising in this area of the market for more than two decades and has managed this fund since 2007. He looks for companies with progressive-thinking management, dominant positions, above-market growth and sustainable or improving profitability. The fund has returned 492.2%^^ during Jeremy’s tenure, compared with 321.9%^^ for the average fund in the IA Technology and telecommunications sector.
David joined Threadneedle as an equity research analyst in 1999 and has been managing this fund since 2008. The fund invest predominantly in the continent’s larger companies and have developed a distinctive investment process that focuses on industry structure and a company’s competitive position. Under David’s management, the fund has returned 225.5%^^^ compared with 113.4%^^^ for the IA Europe Ex UK sector average.
*Source: FundCalibre, 25 June 2019
**Source: FE Analytics, total returns in sterling, 24 July 1995 to 26 June 2019
***Source: FE Analytics, total returns in sterling, 1 July 1998 to 27 June 2019
^Source: FE Analytics, total returns in sterling, 1 July 2005 to 26 June 2019
^^Source: FE Analytics, total returns in sterling, 1 July 2007 to 26 June 2019
^^^Source: FE Analytics, total returns in sterling, 1 July 2008 to 27 June 2019