InvestmentsFeb 13 2023

Investors pull £100mn a month from Jupiter fund

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Investors pull £100mn a month from Jupiter fund
The Jupiter UK Mid Cap fund suffered outflows of £1.14bn in the year to the end of January 2023. (Pexels/Suzy Hazelwood)
ByDavid Thorpe

The Jupiter UK Mid Cap fund, once one of the largest UK equity mandates on the market, suffered outflows of £1.14bn in the year to the end of January 2023, as the fund battled performance issues.

This month Jupiter confirmed that the fund, which has been managed by Richard Watts since 2008, will cease investing in unquoted stocks, and that it was selling its largest holding, which was an unquoted position in Starling Bank.  

This policy was partly achieved by selling its stake in Starling Bank to the Chrysalis investment trust, which is also managed by Watts, and is the third largest holding in the Jupiter UK mid cap fund, a stake worth around £20mn. 

The fund is ranked absolute bottom (243rd out of 243 funds) of the IA UK All Companies sector over the past three years to February 10, and bottom quartile over one, three and five years. 

It has lost 27 per cent over the three-year period. 

Data from Morningstar showed net outflows in each of the past twelve months.

The latest net assets figure supplied by FE Analytics indicates the fund was £957mn in size on February 9, 2023, having reached £3.6bn in September 2021.

That period from mid-2021 to September 2023 encompasses a period when the previously high multiples at which technology and other unquoted stocks began to unwind as interest rates in the US rose. 

Starling Bank, which is an unquoted company, is listed in the most recent factsheet as the largest investment, and the vast bulk of the 6 per cent of the Jupiter UK Mid Cap fund’s unquoted holdings, prior to it being sold. 

Data from FTAdviser's sister publication Asset Allocator indicates the fund is now owned by one UK discretionary fund manager of any size, with two others having sold out of the mandate in 2022, contributing to the outflows.

Fidelity’s retail platform also blocked clients from adding to the fund at the end of 2022, in a move it said was in the best interests of its clients.