Gars-style products dominate 2015 fund flows

Gars-style products dominate 2015 fund flows

Invesco Perpetual’s Global Targeted Returns fund was the most popular portfolio among UK retail investors in 2015, rubber-stamping absolute return funds’ dominance of the marketplace.

The portfolio amassed £3.9bn in net flows in 2015, according to data provider Morningstar’s estimates, easily outstripping the Standard Life Investments (SLI) Gars fund from which it took inspiration.

Gars sat in third place with £2.9bn in net flows. Its influence in the fund management industry is also clear from the status of Aviva Investors’ Multi-Strategy Target Return fund as the fourth most popular fund with inflows of £1bn. Both Aviva and Invesco have recruited from SLI in recent years ahead of their product launches.

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Sitting among the trio of go-anywhere portfolios is the Woodford Equity Income fund, which took in £3.2bn to bring its assets to £8.1bn, 18 months after launch. Artemis Global Income (£1.1bn), Fundsmith Equity (£1bn) and Investec Diversified Growth (£960m) were other popular portfolios.

The most significant flow movement of 2015 came on the downside, however, as Richard Woolnough’s M&G Optimal Income fund shed an estimated £6.9bn in assets. M&G also saw outflows from Stuart Rhodes’ Global Dividend fund, with redemptions of £2.8bn.

Other strugglers were Newton Asian Income, which lost about £2bn following Jason Pidcock’s departure, though redemptions eased off by the end of 2015; and Mark Barnett’s Invesco Perpetual Income fund, which shed more than £1bn in net terms.