Investments 

Why one multi-manager is pulling back from Lindsell Train

Why one multi-manager is pulling back from Lindsell Train

Nathan Sweeney, senior investment manager at fund of funds house Architas, has been reducing his investment in the UK fund run by Nick Train, but ploughed more into the mandate run by Artermis's Adrian Frost.

Mr Sweeney said: "The Lindsell Train fund has done very well, but it has a lot of exposure to companies listed in the UK but that derive most of their earnings from overseas.

"Those companies do well when sterling is weak, but we expect that as there is greater clarity on what is happening with Brexit, sterling will rise in value, as has already happened this year.

"For that reason we have trimmed our investment in the Lindsell Train UK equity fund."

The £5.4bn Lindsell Train UK equity fund was the seventh best performer from than 200 funds in the IA UK All Companies sector in the 2018 calendar year, but in 2019 so far, is among the worst performers. In his most recent update to investors, Mr Train urged shareholders to “keep the faith” with his strategy.

The fund Mr Sweeney has been buying instead is the £5.2bn Artemis Income fund, run since 2002 by Mr Frost.

Mr Sweeney said the fund has a defensive stance right now, and so if the market takes another lurch downwards, he expects it to perform well.

The fund has performed better than the average for the IA UK Equity Income sector over this year to date, and lost slightly less than the market average in the 2018 calendar year.

He has also invested in the Ardevora UK Equity fund, which is significantly invested in UK small and mid cap shares.

More broadly, Mr Sweeney has invested more in the US and emerging markets this year.

He said his expectation is that US interest rates will not rise by as much this year as the market had previously expected.

But he said he thinks company earnings will remain strong, justifying a good year for the asset class.

Emerging markets would be expected to perform well if dollar weakens, while Mr Sweeney said the Chinese government is likely to try to stimulate the economy, which will boost emerging market investments.

Edward Park, deputy chief investment officer at wealth manager Brooks Macdonald, said he remains concerned about the sustainability of the recent equity market rally.

He said he has been "selling into the rally, rather than buying dips."

His overall investment in equities has been cut, and he has invested more in bonds with a short duration to maturity. 

david.thorpe@ft.com