InvestmentsMay 8 2013

BlackRock trust to minimise share discount

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ByEleanor Lawrie

The board of the BlackRock Smaller Companies investment trust has said it is looking to “minimise” its shares’ discount to the portfolio’s net asset value, which averaged 15.5 per cent in the year to February 28.

“Your board recognises it is in the long-term interests of shareholders that the discount to net asset value at which the shares trade should be minimised as far as possible and will continue to focus on attempting to narrow this margin,” chairman Nicholas Fry said in the investment trust’s annual results.

“An important factor in achieving this is to create demand for the shares in the secondary market.”

The trust’s net asset value rose 16.2 per cent in the year, compared with 12.3 per cent for the Numis Smaller Companies plus AIM ex Investment Companies index.

“Stock selection contributed strongly to relative outperformance during the year, as did gearing, while the contribution from sector allocation was marginally negative,” manager Mike Prentis said, adding that mining stocks had detracted from performance.