Global 

Trojan Global Income manager sees US as refuge

 

The manager of the Trojan Global Income fund has said he is investing in the USA because many other regions are slowing down as the bull market comes to an end.

More than half of James Harries's £173m fund - 53 per cent - is invested in North America, which makes it significantly overweight that region compared to its sector, the IA Global Equity Income, which is 40 per cent invested in North America.

Mr Harries said: "We find the best businesses in the most vibrant economy, which is why we have a lot of capital invested in the US.

"There is the further point, however, that we are now 10 years into a bull market and we are seeing other parts of the world slowdown somewhat.

"China has been slowing, Europe has been slowing, more peripheral countries such as Turkey have been having problems, and the US looks relatively good on that basis.

"Therefore we think the US currency is likely to be well supported and attractive to investors, either because of the relative vibrancy of the US economy or because there are problems elsewhere and the US dollar tends to do reasonably well.

"We have a lot of ideas of businesses we would like to own around the world but we think currently they are too expensive, and that's why we have a higher proportion than perhaps normal in the US economy."

Mr Harries also warned against investing on the basis of the trade war between the US and China.

He said trade talks between the two countries "either would work out or they won't work out" and that he was a long-term fundamental investor.

Mr Harries said: "We like to invest in business that have global business, that are trying to gain a foothold in many of the more peripheral economies around the world.

"Paul Polman, the ex-Unilever CEO said you have to invest in emerging markets, because it's where all the people are. That's true. So we are not particularly swayed one way or the other by which way the trade talks might go."

The Trojan Global Income fund, which launched in 2016, has returned 18.8 per cent over the past year, outperforming its sector which returned 11.5 per cent.

Since inception, the fund has returned 27 per cent while its sector returned 23 per cent.

damian.fantato@ft.com