More ‘Daves’ than women running funds

More ‘Daves’ than women running funds

More funds have a manager called David or Dave at the helm than a women, research has shown.

According to figures from Morningstar, 108 UK-listed open-ended funds are run by managers named Dave or David — the equivalent of 7.2 per cent of the 1,496 funds in the market.

Meanwhile just 105 funds are run by female fund managers, also accounting for 7 per cent of all open-ended funds.

Other common names included Paul, with 87 funds having a man called Paul in charge, James (65 funds) and Nick (62 funds).

The most common female name among fund managers was Kate, at 12 funds, while Johanna and Katie both had 10.

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Jason Hollands, managing director at Tilney Bestinvest, said the proportion of female managers was “embarrassingly low”, particularly compared with other professions such as law and accountancy. 

Ann Cairns, executive vice chairman of Mastercard and global co-chair of the 30% Club, a campaign group of chairpersons and CEOs taking action to increase gender diversity on boards and senior management teams, said: “This data is disappointing, but nothing new.

"Perhaps the biggest blocker to gender balance within the asset management industry is the perception that it is a male-dominated culture. The 30% Club’s Think Future Study found that financial services rated a lowly 12th on the list of career choices for female students, versus 4th on the list for male students."

Ms Cairns said it was "vital" more women were encouraged into asset management, noting internships and early exposure was key to encourage more women to enter the industry.

Emma Morgan, portfolio manager at Morningstar Investment Management Europe, agreed, adding it was a "great shame" the industry was missing out on a swathe of talented individuals.

Just yesterday (November 19) the Financial Conduct Authority published a damning report on how little progress had been made towards achieving gender diversity in the financial services industry.

The regulator warned diversity had remained "consistently low" at industry level, with a female quota of approximately 17 per cent of FCA approved individuals.

Diversity is an issue featuring increasingly in the spotlight in the world of finance and several non-profit organisations are working on the problem. 

Campaign group 100 Women has recently launched a female fund manager visibility campaign and Gain, set up by fund manager Charlotte Yonge, aims at inspiring young women of sixth form age (typically aged 17 and 18) about a career in asset management.

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