Investments  

“I wouldn’t pigeonhole myself as a growth investor”

“Tim is a sensible investor, focused on buying businesses with profits that are backed by cash, and I inherited a portfolio that is, on the whole, positioned in some sound investments.”

Of course, taking on a new fund means putting your own stamp on it but Mr Legget stresses any changes are an ongoing process.

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“Myself, Paul [Casson] and Ambrose [Faulks] – who both worked with Tim – took the decision to evolve the portfolio through time, as opposed to making a large change on day one.”

He explains: “For me, fund management is a constantly evolving process, you’re never finished in terms of where the portfolio is. What might be your top 50 ideas one day are not necessarily going to be your top 50 ideas in a week’s time as newsflow, markets and share prices move. It’s a dynamic job, running a fund.

“Clearly there will be names in the portfolio that maybe Tim liked as investments but I have a different view, or that I like that Tim didn’t own. So to date, probably over the first three months, about 30 per cent of the fund has moved.”

The manager points out he tends to take an 18- to 24-month view of how he sees the portfolio evolving, in terms of sectors the team think are interesting and markets they believe are on the verge of turning – either positively or negatively.

“I have a view of how I expect the portfolio to evolve through time, but clearly you have newsflow that may change your views.

“To me, the investment challenge is a combination of taking a top-down macro view and bottom-up investment insights and combining the two to generate interesting investment observations and then incorporating those into a balanced portfolio.”

For Mr Legget, however, it is all about the performance of the products he runs and the track record which he has produced by applying his investment philosophy. This has been underlined by the change in the fund’s name from UK Growth to UK Select, which created continuity with the Artemis US and Global Select funds, but also better reflects Mr Legget’s approach.

“If I was asked to describe my investment style, I wouldn’t pigeonhole myself as a growth investor. I own growth stocks today and I have owned growth stocks in the past but, in general, I would put myself in a slightly more contrarian camp. That’s broadly because I’m a strong believer that your returns come from three pots: your income; underlying growth; and the cashflows of the business and the multiple the market is willing to pay for that,” he notes.