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BlackRock's Shearer steps down from £115m US income trust

BlackRock's Shearer steps down from £115m US income trust

Manager of the £115m BlackRock North American Income Trust Bob Shearer is to retire from the firm later this year, handing responsibility to co-manager Tony DeSpirito.

Mr Shearer, a veteran of BlackRock having spent 20 years with the firm, will retire at the end of August. He has managed the North American Income Trust for almost five years, but has other responsibilities for the firm including managing one of its largest US portfolios sized at some $22bn (£17.4bn). He also manages a Luxembourg domiciled $127m North American Equity Income strategy - akin to the UK investment trust.

A statement from the trust's board confirmed Mr Shearer's intention to leave BlackRock and step down as co-manager later this year.

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It added: "The board and managers will review the portfolio management arrangements at that date, but the current intention is that Mr DeSpirito will assume full responsibility for the portfolio."

The trust has returned 70 per cent over three years compared to the AIC North American Equities sector average of 52 per cent, according to FE Analytics. It is currently trading on a 1.3 per cent discount to NAV.