Through this period of uncertainty, the fund outperformed, returning 6.3% in sterling terms versus a 4.0% gain in its benchmark. As ever, we generated these returns through a mixture of good stock selection and sector allocation. It was particularly encouraging that our stock selection across a wide range of sectors was positive.
Strategic Assets Fund review, six months to 29 February 2015
Continually falling yields have resulted in stellar returns from bonds that are far in excess of their yields. For example, over the six-month reporting period the yield on 30-year Japanese government bonds (JGBs) fell by 54 basis points to 0.86%, resulting in a ‘return’ of about 14% to their holders.
US Extended Alpha Fund review, year to 29 February 2016
Defence stocks were among the strongest performers in the industrials sector. Over the course of last year, it became apparent the US Department of Defense was to increase spending in 2016 for the first time since 2010. Companies also returned more capital to shareholders.
US Absolute Return Fund review, year to 29 February 2016
As worries about deflation took hold, stability of earnings became particularly important. Telecoms, staples and utilities were thus the best-performing sectors of the market. We remained wary: investors have bid share prices up to high relative valuations and we found more attractive earnings streams elsewhere.
US Smaller Companies Fund review, year to 29 February 2016
In the fund, we took a view that it would be appropriate to have a bias towards companies able to grow their earnings autonomously (or at least keep them stable) rather than those dependent on the wider economy.
Through this period of uncertainty, the fund outperformed, returning 5.4% in sterling terms versus a 4.0% gain in the benchmark. As ever, we generated these returns through a mixture of good stock selection and sector allocation.
Pan-European Absolute Return Fund review, year to 29 February 2016
The fund has performed well over the last 12 months, returning 9.6% – significantly ahead of the 0.5% gain in its cash benchmark. It is some measure of how challenging the environment has been that the MSCI Europe Index fell by 6.5% in sterling terms – and by 12.9% in local currency terms .
Global Emerging Markets Fund review, year to 29 February 2016
The volatility in emerging market equities does not worry us unduly. As investors who focus on the facts (as in the financial characteristics of companies), we rather think that higher volatility increases the potential to add value by being more rigorous and less emotional.
Artemis High Income Fund review, six months to 7 February 2016
During volatility we looked to pick up yield at a discount. The fundamentals underlying credit markets in Europe are still favourable. Leverage is steady and companies are concentrating on generating cashflow.
Artemis Global Energy Fund review, six months to 31 January 2016
In general, share prices across the oil sector tracked the price of crude throughout the period. They rose briefly in response to positive comments from OPEC and the Energy Information Agency (‘EIA’) but generally fell through to the end of January.
What has delayed the recovery in the price of crude? Has it bottomed at last? And when will it be ‘safe’ for investors to go back into oil & gas? The manager of the Artemis Global Energy Fund gives his views.
Mid Wynd International Investment Trust review, six months to 31 December 2015
Despite the MSCI All Country World Index only rising by 1.5 per cent over the last six months, the net asset value of the Company increased by 5.1 per cent. Most of this outperformance can be attributed to solid underlying growth from the companies which make up the core of the portfolio.
Vindicating our decision to maintain our strategy in the face of volatility, 2015 was a good year for the fund’s unitholders. The fund returned 12.2% vs 1.0% for the benchmark (the FTSE All-Share Index) and 4.6% for the sector average.
UK Special Situations Fund review, year to 31 December 2015
This year’s selection of stumbling blocks – Greece, the UK’s general election, China, a collapse in commodity prices, terrorism and central bankers – make the prospect of a Tough Mudder seem appealing.
The final stages of a sell-off can be the most interesting, says Simon Edelsten, manager of the Global Select Fund. It is not a matter of calling the ‘bottom’. Instead, investors should focus on selected stocks’ prospects over the longer term.
Jacob de Tusch-Lec, manager of the Global Income Fund, analyses a sell-off so “vicious” that the ‘hot’ stocks are underperforming emerging markets. What does it mean for the portfolio – now and in the months to come?
Artemis Income Fund review, six months to 31 October 2015
The six months under review have been a difficult period for equity markets, with the benchmark falling by 5.7%. The reasons for this were many and varied. Some would say that the primary cause was the increased evidence of a slowing Chinese economy.
Artemis Global Select Fund review, six months to 31 October 2015
Over the last six months the MSCI AC World Index declined by 5.2% in sterling terms, while the fund fell by 0.4%. We have always positioned the portfolio with a view to protecting capital in difficult conditions.
European Opportunities Fund review, six months to 31 October 2015
Over the six months under review, the fund fell by 2.6% versus a decline of 5.7% in the benchmark. The challenge for stock pickers like us was to navigate through the volatility caused largely by macro events. In June, the focus was on Greece.
A US revolution: Investing in creative destruction
The theme of ‘creative destruction’, or the impact of new technology, gathered pace in 2015. But which companies make an attractive investment? Stephen Moore, manager of the Artemis US Extended Alpha Fund, reviews.
Political change and the ‘normalisation’ of interest rates mean 2016 is likely to be another interesting year. But what will it bring for equities – and bonds? Here, a number of Artemis' managers share their views.
Optimism is as American as baseball and apple pie. And since the financial crisis, being optimistic about US equities has paid off: they have outperformed every other major developed market by a comfortable margin.
US Select Fund review, six months to 31 August 2015
The fund fell over the six-month review period although the performance relative to its benchmark was strong. Driven almost exclusively by stock-picking, the fund outperformed the S&P 500 Index by a significant margin.
US Equity Fund review, six months to 31 August 2015
The fund produced a negative return over the period but held up better than the S&P 500 Index. This outperformance was due principally to strong stock selection, offset slightly by less successful industry allocation.
US Extended Alpha Fund review, six months to 31 August 2015
Over the past six months, the fund has generated alpha (an excess return relative to its benchmark) in both rising and falling markets. This was achieved through careful management of risk – the excess returns were significantly greater than its tracking error.
US Absolute Return Fund review, six months to 31 August 2015
Over the past six months, the fund has generated alpha (an excess return relative to its benchmark) in both rising and falling markets. This was achieved in parallel with careful management of risk – the excess returns were greater than its tracking error.
Pan-European Absolute Return Fund review, six months to 31 August 2015
Your fund performed well over the period. The net asset value rose by 9.0% in a weak market assailed by macro and political concerns. Over the same period, our peers in the IA Targeted Absolute Return Sector achieved an average of 0.9%, while the MSCI Europe Index (GBP) fell by 5.1%.
Cormac Weldon: a focus on growth, quality and sustainability in the US
Reacting to the Fed’s decision to hold interest rates, Cormac Weldon, Artemis’ head of US equities, talks to Portfolio Adviser about why he believes any short-term concern over the Fed’s decision should not be overdone.
It has been, to put it mildly, a frustrating six months for investors. As the graph below shows, equity markets fell over the period. In the six months to the end of September 2015, on a total return basis and in sterling, the FTSE 100 was down by
8.7%, the S&P 500 by 8.1% and the MSCI AC World by 10.9%.
We are pleased that the fund has returned 4.6% over the year and the distribution has increased by 6.1%. While the fund’s performance lagged its formal benchmark (the Markit iBoxx sterling non-gilts Index), that is not really comparing like with like.
This was a painful year to invest in the energy sector: oil prices worldwide halved and the fund fell by 41.6%. Given the fund’s bias to exploration and production (E&P) companies, things might have been even worse.
Over the period, the fund produced a return broadly in line with the rise in the global market. At the same time, however, it significantly outperformed the majority of its peer group, where the average return was just 6.6%.
Interviewed by Investors Chronicle, Jacob de Tusch-Lec, manager of the Artemis Global Income Fund, explains how equity income shares are holding up amid current volatility and where he is finding investment opportunities.
Mid Wynd International Investment Trust review, year to 30 June 2015
Despite the significant differences in composition between the fund and the benchmark, they performed in a broadly similar fashion over the reporting period. The FTSE All-Share Index returned 3.0% while the fund returned 3.4%.
As investors takes fright at events in China, Simon Edelsten, manager of the Artemis Global Select Fund, recommends an opportunity for attractive growth in the developed world that does not depend on emerging markets.
Cormac Weldon: what do the latest US company results mean for investors?
This quarter’s results season in the US has been even more closely observed than usual. It could be the last before a rise in interest rates. Cormac Weldon, head of Artemis’ US equity team, talks through the latest figures, how his investment approach has benefited, and where he is finding opportunities.
Edelsten: restructuring Mid Wynd around long-term growth themes
A year after Artemis took over management of Mid Wynd International Investment Trust, Simon Edelsten tells Citywire Wealth Manager why he has increased the portfolio’s allocation to healthcare and the US.
After joining Artemis last year, Cormac Weldon launched the Artemis US Equity, US Select and US Smaller Companies Funds. A lot has happened in the US economy since – including a period of unexpectedly weak growth in the first quarter of this year. US stocks, however, have produced positive returns and all three funds are comfortably ahead of their benchmarks. Cormac looks back on the changes and explains why the funds are changing too.
In the five years since we launched the Artemis Global Income Fund, its manager Jacob de Tusch-Lec has built a distinctive portfolio that is first among its peers*. Here he explains why his “quality, cyclical and value yield” stocks, and flexible approach, leave the fund better placed to benefit from uncertainty than funds that depend on the classic income payers.
Having returned only 1.8% at the interim stage, the fund finished its year strongly. It rose by 10.0% (class I) over the year under review – 2.5% better than the return achieved by the FTSE All-Share Index.
European Opportunities Fund review, year to 30 April 2015
The fund performed well over the year, returning 9.8% versus 7.0% from the FTSE World Europe (ex-UK) Index and a 6.6% average by its peers. Since launch in October 2011, it has returned 62.3%* versus the 49.2% produced by the benchmark.
European equities and QE: the trillion-euro question
In this ‘Hunters’ Talk’, Mark Page, manager of the Artemis European Opportunities Fund, considers the valuations of European equities, asks what effect quantitative easing (QE) is really having and explains how – and where – he is investing.
The fund enjoyed a good year, returning 28.3% and outperforming the MSCI AC World Index by almost 8%. Annualised returns since the end of 2003, when we began managing this fund using SmartGARP, Artemis’ proprietary stock screening tool, stand at 11.2% (after fees).
The fund returned 4.8% for the year. Our peer group averaged 6.6% and the Markit iBoxx Sterling non-gilts Index returned 13.1%. Long bonds did well in the year under review. Our more cautious strategy of avoiding this area did not pay off this year - though it did last year.
European Growth Fund review, year to 31 March 2015
We launched this fund 14 years ago. Over that period the people and processes involved in managing the fund are largely unchanged. Since inception the fund has returned 171.9% whilst the market has returned 108.9%.
In the wake of US Federal Reserve chief Janet Yellen saying that US equities look fully valued, Artemis US equity manager Cormac speaks to Morningstar’s Emma Wall about whether it’s time to sell US equities.
Something is happening in global markets. Fashionable sectors have fallen out of favour. Cheap and unloved stocks are suddenly attractive. German bund yields have jumped higher. European equities have sold off. Trend-following strategies have struggled. All this suggests instability. Artemis Global Income manager Jacob de Tusch-Lec discusses what is causing it and how investors should respond.
Artemis Global Income: favouring Europe over the US
With a 10% return* from his Global Income Fund in the first three months of 2015, Jacob de Tusch-Lec talks to journalist Alexis Xydias about the drivers and why he favours Europe and Asia over the USA.
US Smaller Companies Fund review, launch to 28 February 2015
Given the predominant influence on the US stockmarket of accommodative monetary policy and other macro-economic factors, the period has not been a naturally fertile one for active stock-pickers such as we are.
We regard the fund’s return over the period as satisfactory. Given the predominant influence on the US stockmarket of accommodative monetary policy and other macroeconomic factors, the period has not been a naturally fertile one for active stock-pickers such as we are. As we explain in the outlook section below, we expect this situation to change through 2015 and beyond.
Pan-European Absolute Return Fund review, launch to 28 February 2015
The fund’s net asset value rose by 1.0% from its launch on 14 July 2014 to the end of February 2015. While this was a fairly pedestrian outcome against the peer group, the headline figure masks two quite different periods of performance.
US Extended Alpha Fund review, launch to 28 February 2015
The fund performed in line with our expectations, outperforming the index. As economic growth around the world slowed, fundamentals in energy and energy-related stocks deteriorated. The fund beneftted from that deterioration. At the same time, however, pricing concerns hurt some of our pharmaceutical stocks
We regard the fund’s return over the period as satisfactory. Given the predominant influence on the US stockmarket of accommodative monetary policy and other macroeconomic factors, the period has not been a naturally fertile one for active stock-pickers such as we are. We expect this situation to change through 2015 and beyond.
US Absolute Return Fund review, launch to 28 February 2015
The fund generated a positive absolute return over the period, outperforming its LIBOR 3 month benchmark. As economic growth around the world slowed, fundamentals in energy and capital goods stocks deteriorated. The fund benefited from that deterioration
The Owl of Minerva – Monetary policy and the unknown unknowns
Higher US rates will result in trickier market conditions, says fund manager Simon Edelsten of Artemis Global Select. But there are ways to protect capital and still make worthwhile investments. Simon calls it the Donald Rumsfeld defence.
High Income Fund Review, six months to 7 February 2015
The fund returned 2.3% over the six months to 7 February 2015. This was modest compared to the double-digit returns produced by longer-dated government bonds and by some other funds in the sector. The managers remain cautiously optimistic.
Global Income Fund review, six months to 31 January 2015
The fund returned 10.4% versus 9.9% for the benchmark and 7.0% for the sector average. The negatives were more than offset by a number of good decisions. We sold our oil holdings at the right time and hedged the fund’s currency exposure.
Global Energy Fund review, six months to 31 January 2015
In general, the news from the fund’s holdings was good: there were no shocks, and reserves have increased. But the fund’s performance over the period was correlated closely with the unexpected and savage fall in the price of oil.
Philip Wolstencroft, Artemis Capital Fund manager, comments on the UK stocks and sectors the SmartGARP system is highlighting at present. He also comments on the attractiveness of oil stocks in the UK.
Monthly Distribution Fund review, year to 31 December 2014
The fund outperformed the sector, returning 8.3% compared to a sector average of 4.3%. Over the 12 months under review, we believe we have succeeded in our task, generating an attractive monthly yield while also delivering capital growth.
UK Special Situations Fund review, year to 31 December 2014
We always recognised that 2014 would be a tough year, with higher valuations, earnings downgrades and the spectre of rising interest rates. We had hoped, however, to have produced a better relative result. That said, over the past three years the fund has produced a return of 50.9% against 37.3% from our benchmark.
In his latest Hunters’ Talk, Jacob de Tusch-Lec explains why he believes European stocks may be at an inflection point and describes how – and why – he has positioned the Artemis Global Income Fund to benefit from €1 trillion of asset purchases by the ECB.
Mid Wynd International Investment Trust review, six months to 31 December 2014
This was a busy but rewarding six months for the Company. Having largely completed re-structuring the portfolio by the end of June, we let the Company’s new holdings go to work in the market over the last six months of the year.
The fund rose by 1.4% over the six months. Given that there was plenty for markets to worry about, and that any pockets of cheer were isolated, this resilience was welcome. The FTSE All-Share Index fell by 1.6% over the same period.
Global Select Fund review, six months to 31 October 2014
Although equity markets became unsettled over the six months in question, global stocks have continued to deliver attractive returns. The MSCI All Country World Index returned 8.0% in sterling terms. Despite our continued conservatism, the fund’s unit price rose by 6.8%, and placed us in the second quartile of our peers.
European Opportunities Fund review, six months to 31 October 2014
Over the six months, the fund fell by 4.1%. That was in line with the benchmark, yet better than the sector average. Three years on from its launch, your fund is ahead of European indices and has performed significantly better than the average fund.
The year under review began well but, as we had anticipated at the interim stage, the second half of the year was tougher. Despite these more difficult conditions, we managed to retain most of our earlier gains, delivering a total return for the year of 22.9 per cent.
Despite a patchy recovery across Europe, Paul Casson, manager of the Artemis Pan-European Absolute Return Fund, says it is difficult to be bearish with a weaker currency, supportive central bank and low interest rates.
Adrian Frost: “brighter spots” for consumers in 2015
With consumers under continuous pressure for the past six years, Adrian Frost, manager of the Artemis Income Fund, thinks that falling oil and commodity prices should offer some brighter spots in the year ahead.
European Growth Fund review, six months to 30 September 2014
Over the six months under review, European markets fell by 2.3%. The fund, meanwhile, fell by just over 4.0%, gross return. Since we launched it in 2001, the benchmark has risen by up 90.0% while your fund has returned 147.6%.
As we see the interim and annual reports for their funds come through, a number of Artemis’ managers are feeling positive: not perhaps on markets as a whole, but on the opportunities for stock-pickers in markets such as these. Here, four of our managers give their views on the current state of the markets.
James Foster: attractive fixed income opportunities still to be found
With economic forecasts turning out off-target, Artemis Strategic Bond Fund manager James Foster discusses the impact on his fund’s portfolio and where he’s looking in the bond markets for attractive opportunities.
The fund recently celebrated its fourth anniversary. We would like to thank unitholders for entrusting us with their money over the last four years. Since its launch in July 2010, the fund has rewarded that trust with a total return of 82.8%. That compares with a return of 51.8% from the sector and 48.6% from the benchmark, the MSCI All Country World NR Index.
The fund returned 0.1% over the year. That compares with 3.2% from the specialist sector average and 5.5% from the benchmark, the MSCI ACWI Energy (GBP) Index. That said, many of the constituents of the benchmark are large, integrated majors which we didn’t and don’t own.
There have been 44 bull markets since 1928. Up to the end of August, the present bull market was the fifth-longest since that year when the volcanic island of Anak Krakatau first appeared - and Leon Trotsky found himself banished to Alma-Ata.
Monthly Distribution Fund review, six months to 30 June 2014
The fund, has generated a good return over the last six months, significantly outperforming its peer group. Our strategy of focusing on high-yield bonds and financials within the portfolio’s fixed-income allocation, and on high-yielding, lower-risk equities, has paid off handsomely.
UK Smaller Companies Fund review, six months to 30 June 2014
Although our fund was little changed over the period as a whole, the overall pattern of its relative returns was more nuanced than the bald figures suggest. In the early part of the year, the fund struggled to keep up with the strong bull market. But it outperformed when the market began to fall, more than regaining the ground it lost at the start of the year
Over the first six months, your fund fell by 1.6% against a market that rose by 1.6%. It was a story of a good start and a poor end. The fund did well in the first three months of the year, but suffered in the second as investors switched out of UK-centric growth stocks (in which your fund has an overweight position) and into value stocks.
Secure in the boons of central bankers, markets have entered the summer in a state of almost Zen-like calm. The S&P 500 is now up 191% since the beginning of the bull market on 9 March 2009. That exceeds by 26% the same index’s previous record high on 7 October 2007.
Alpha Trust reports 13.3% net asset value increase in its latest annual report
Over the year to 30 April 2014, the Company’s net asset value rose by 13.3% compared to a 10.5% increase in the FTSE All-Share Index. This was a significant improvement on the previous year, when the value ascribed to a number of the Company’s unquoted holdings was written down, weighing on the Company’s relative returns.
Adrian Gosden updates investors on progress and outlook for the Artemis Income Fund, discussing some of the negative and positive activities in the market and how the fund is positioned going forwards.
Derek Stuart on valuations, earnings, M&A and small-caps
Artemis UK Special Situations Fund manager Derek Stuart considers the state of the UK market, the attractiveness of UK equities, the volume of mergers-and-acquisitions activity and the prospects for smaller companies.
Positive returns and outlook for global growth stocks
With expected market events not happening, Peter Saacke reports that for the average global investor, there have been “plenty of opportunities to lose money” over the last six months. He’s happy to report that his Global Growth Fund has bettered its peers and its benchmark.
European Opportunities Fund review, year to 30 April 2014
The fund lagged slightly behind this year, returning 13.6%, versus 14.8% for benchmark. However, it is still outperforming since launch. Fund managers Mark Page and Laurent Millet believe their use of derivatives detracted from performance, but remain optimistic.
The fund managers’ cautious approach to long-term investment was not rewarded, and the fund returned -0.2% versus 5.4% from its benchmark. The fund has still outperformed the sector since inception, returning 26.1% compared to a sector average return of 24.0%.
After expenses, the fund returned 10.8% for the year, compared with a return of 10.5% from the FTSE All-Share Index. This modest degree of outperformance is disappointing relative to our aim – and to the returns produced by some of our competitors. Against that, however, the fund continued to provide a yield that is notably higher than the market, and it did so with significantly less volatility.
Artemis Global Income: a half-time report – stock selection trumps ‘pain trades’
So far this year, the Artemis Global Income Fund has outperformed both its benchmark and its peers rather handsomely. Interestingly, however, it has outperformed despite macro factors not playing out as many investors had expected...
High Income Fund review, six months to 7 February 2014
Although it is tempting to describe a return of 5.7% over the period as merely ‘steady’, this reflects how far expectations have been raised by the very strong returns the fund has produced in recent years. Our job is to strike the right balance between risk and reward. Given that investing in high yielding bonds is more risky than government bonds, it should receive a greater reward.
Global Energy Fund review, six months to 31 January 2014
In their six-monthly review, the managers report that the fund fell by 11.2%. They attribute this to the adverse sentiment in the energy sector, and remain committed to carefully chosen exploration and production stocks.
Separating the wheat from the chaff in global investing
The start of 2014 has been marked by near-constant change on a corporate, macro and geopolitical level. This daily barrage of news can seem vitally important at the time. But its impact on long-term investment returns is often limited.
So how do long-term investors, like Simon Edelsten, manager of the Artemis Global Select Fund, filter the short-term noise for important new information?
UK Smaller Companies Fund review, year to 31 December 2013
Investors in UK smaller companies enjoyed excellent returns in 2013, with the second half of the year even better than the first. Despite the very healthy 30.2% return on the fund, we were disappointed not to have made headway against the benchmark.
Monthly Distribution Fund review, year to 31 December 2013
We are very pleased with the return that the fund produced over the year. The average return from the funds in our peer group was 8.8%. The Fund, however, generated a return of 17.1% – a significant degree of outperformance.
As the year progressed, multiples expanded ahead of the earnings recovery. This is standard procedure for this stage in the stockmarket cycle. More importantly, it gave us a healthy backdrop against which to invest. For the fund, the result was a very pleasing 36.4% return.
Are the bears back? January, certainly, was a sobering month for investors worldwide. No-one likes to see £1.5 trillion taken off the value of the world’s equities, as happened last miserable month. But those of us who were around in 1997, when the Thai baht went into batter and contagion spread, think that the sell-off was more panic than prudence.
The three ‘p’s of fund management, (in)famously, are ‘performance, performance and performance’. It is gratifying to be able to review a further period in which some 70% of our funds have outperformed both the market and their peers.
‘Artemis Accounts’, our six-monthly update for investors, examines what has been happening in the markets, and why; and looks to what we think the future holds.
Five years ago this month, the cabal controlling Lehman Brothers capitulated – and the rest, as they say, is history. What policy-makers and markets have achieved since then is astonishing. They have recovered from the biggest financial collapse since the Great Depression. Among other things they have overcome crisis in the eurozone, the US ‘fiscal cliff’ and tension in the Middle East.
To the end of April, the UK market has gone up for 11 consecutive months. This has never happened before since the FTSE’s birth in 1962. In this month’s ‘Market Matters’, we consider such predictive powers as history affords ...
Confounding the sceptics and underwritten by central banks, stockmarkets around the world have gone up in the past six months. ‘Artemis Accounts’, our twice-yearly review for investors, reviews what has been happening, and why, over the last six months; and looks to what we think the future holds.
Issued by Artemis Fund Managers Limited which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.
The intention of Artemis' 'investment insights' articles is to present users with objective news, information, data and guidance on finance topics drawn from a diverse collection of sources. Content is not intended to provide tax, legal, insurance or investment advice and should not be construed as an offer to sell, a solicitation of an offer to buy, or a recommendation for any security or investment by Artemis or any third-party. Potential investors should consider the need for independent financial advice. Any research or analysis contained in this document has been procured by Artemis for its own use and may be acted on in that connection. The contents of the document are based on sources of information believed to be reliable; however, save to the extent required by applicable law or regulations, no guarantee, warranty or representation is given as to its accuracy or completeness. The document may include forward-looking statements which are based on Artemis' current opinions, expectations and projections. It is provided to you only incidentally, and any opinions expressed are subject to change without notice. The source for all data is Artemis, unless stated otherwise.
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