Rayner Spencer Mills puts four major funds under review

Fund rating group Rayner Spencer Mills Research has put major four funds from three fund groups under review following manager changes.

The group said it had placed Investec UK Smaller Companies under review following the announcement by manager Philip Rodrigs that he had quit to join rival River & Mercantile.

It has also placed the Invesco Perpetual UK Smaller Companies Equity fund under review after manager Richard Smith announced his retirement in December.

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Threadneedle has seen two funds put under review. Firstly its UK Mid 250 fund after management responsibilities were given to James Thorne and Matt Evans in December last year following Simon Haines’ move to its global desk, and its American Select fund is also under review after Cormac Weldon and his team announced their move to Artemis last month.

Geoff Mills, group director at Rayner Spencer Mills Research, said he had “placed these funds under review while we meet with the new teams to ascertain the impact of these changes and to examine how the funds’ respective strategies could be affected”.

Elsewhere, Mr Mills said it had added Mark Barnett’s Invesco Perpetual UK Strategic Income fund to its rated funds list. This follows the decision to remove Paul Marriage’s Cazenove UK Smaller Companies from its rated funds list as it has implemented punitive charges to discourage new investment because of its size.

The move shows support for Mr Barnett, who is taking on Neil Woodford’s fund franchise - which includes the £13.6bn High Income fund and £8.4bn Income funds - on top of his existing responsibilities.

“Having thoroughly reviewed Invesco Perpetual UK Strategic Income, we are pleased to have added this fund to our rated funds list,” Mr Mills said.

“This fund has been run by Mark Barnett since inception in 2007 and has been as successful in performance terms as the larger Income and Higher Income funds Mark [will] also run.

“Following an in-depth analysis of the fund’s objective and Mark’s investment process, we are happy to award this offering our RSMR rating.”