Fund to watch: First State Global Emerging Markets Leaders
A big open-ended investment company, First State Global Emerging Markets Leaders is a solid performer that has been jointly managed by Jonathan Asante and Glen Finegan since the beginning of 2011, though Asante has been in the chair since March 2007.
The fund has put on 74.58% over five years, 60.96% over three years and 2.77% over 12 months.
With more than half the fund in Asia Pacific equities and another 22.5% in Middle East and African equities, it has a big weight in consumer staples, financials and IT. Big individual holdings include Taiwan Semiconductor Co, the European brewer Anheuser Busch, Samsung Fire & Marine and Tiger Brands.
Darius McDermott, managing director of Chelsea Financial Services, says: "First State Global Emerging Market Leaders is a quality fund. Historically, it has the lowest volatility among its peers while still producing some of the best returns. The fund also tends to preserve capital well in falling markets.
"Its management has a proven track record in looking for companies with good balance sheets and the team is generally a very strong and experienced one."
Rod Leonard, managing director of Investment Interest Management, says: "The fund managers have an obvious strategy of maintaining a defensive bias as they look for companies with conservative debt levels, predictable earnings and steady cash flow with an impressive performance of 15.5% over one year, securing the funds status as one of the top funds within the IMA Global Emerging Markets sector."
Telephone: 0800 587 3388
Fund manager: Jonathan Asante & Glen Finegan
Launch date: 1 December 2003
Total fund size: £2.6 billion
Initial charge: 4% (can be discounted)
Annual management fee: 1.5%
Minimum investment: £1,000 (initially), £50 monthly
Performance fee: None
An individual employed by an institution to manage an investment fund (unit trust, investment trust, pension fund or hedge fund) to meet pre-determined objectives (usually to generate capital growth or maximise income) in prescribed geographic areas or investment sectors (such as UK smaller companies, technology or commodities). The manager also carries the responsibility for general fund supervision, as well as monitoring the daily trading activity and also developing investment strategies to manage the risk profile of the fund.
An interchangeable term for shares (UK) or stocks (US). Holders of equity shares in a company are entitled to the earnings and assets of a company after all the prior charges and demands on the company’s capital (chiefly its debts and liabilities) have been settled. To have equity in any asset is to own a piece of it, so holders of shares in a company effectively own a piece proportionate to the number of shares they hold. (See also Shares).
Generic, loosely-defined term for markets in a newly industrialised or Third World country that is in the process of moving from a closed economy to an open market economy while building accountability within the system. The World Bank recognises 28 countries as emerging markets, including Argentina, Brazil, China, Czech Republic, Egypt, India, Israel, Morocco, Russia and Venezuela. Because these countries carry additional political, economic and currency risks, investors in emerging markets should accept volatile returns. There is potential to make large profit at the risk of large losses.