Skip to main content
  • Register
  • Help
  • Contact us
  • Log out of your HL account
A A A

Rathbone Income - removal from the UK Equity Income sector

Heather Ferguson | Thu 28 April 2016

Investments can go down as well as up so there is always a danger that you could get back less than you invest. Nothing here is personalised advice, if unsure you should seek advice.

The Rathbone Income Fund will move from the IA UK Equity Income sector to the IA UK All Companies sector on 1 May 2016.

Our view on the fund

The Rathbone Income Fund is one of the best UK income funds available, in our view. The change in sector does not denote a change in process and the fund will continue to be managed with the aim of providing a consistent and growing income. Carl Stick, the fund's manager, was unwilling to change the fund to boost the yield in the short term, a decision we view positively as this often has a detrimental impact on the fund's capital. We remain confident in Carl Stick's abilities and the fund will remain on the Wealth 150+ list of our favourite funds with low charges.

Register for free fund research by email

Comment from the manager

The current yield offered by the FTSE All-Share is distorted by the dividends paid by a number of mega-caps, yet we understand that many of these pay-outs are precarious. The market is distorted. If we were to use yield as our primary target, we would put both our own growth in distribution under some threat, and we would be taking on far too much risk for our clients. Nor do we use alternative strategies, such as derivatives or stock lending, which would drastically change the risk profile of the fund. Of course dividend yield is important, but more important is the ability to grow that dividend, as it is from this growth that total returns are maximised. This remains our mantra.

Why has it been removed?

A fund's qualification for the UK Equity Income sector is based on the fund maintaining an average yield of 10% more than the FTSE All Share over a three year period. It also must not fall below 90% of the FTSE All Share yield over any twelve month period. This is currently calculated using a historic yield - taking the income produced during the year as a percentage of the price of the fund at the end of the year.

The Rathbone Income Fund has failed to meet this requirement and therefore no longer qualifies for inclusion to the sector. The manager has been a victim of his own success as the fund has achieved strong capital growth, which has had the effect of lowering the yield (see example below).

Fund A starts the year at a price of £1 per unit and ends the year at £1.10 per unit, producing an income of 5p over the year. The historic yield of the fund is therefore calculated as 4.55% (5p/110p).

Fund B starts the year at a price of £1 per unit and ends the year at £0.90 per unit, producing an income of 5p over the year. The historic yield of the fund is calculated as 5.56% (5p/90p).

Both funds have provided the same amount of income to investors, but fund A has done a much better job of growing capital. However under current rules, it is more difficult for Fund A to meet the requirements of the IA UK Equity Income sector.

Our view on the sector calculations

Calculating the yield based on the income produced for each £1 invested at the start of the period, as opposed to the end of the period would be a fairer measure of success, in our view. In the above example, both funds would be allocated a yield for the year of 5% (5p/100p), and therefore stand the same chance of staying in the sector based on the income they have produced. In this way, income funds which also provide good capital growth aren’t disadvantaged when it comes to staying in the sector. The Investment Association (IA) has launched a consultation on the qualification rules for the UK Equity Income sector to resolve the growing problem of funds being kicked out of the sector. We are working closely with the IA to ensure our clients' best interests are represented.

The value of investments, and any income from them, can fall as well as rise so you could get back less than you invest.

Find out more about this fund including how to invest

Please read the key features/key investor information document in addition to the information above.

Important information - Please remember the value of investments, and any income from them, can fall as well as rise so you could get back less than you invest. This article is provided to help you make your own investment decisions, it is not advice. If you are unsure of the suitability of an investment for your circumstances please seek advice. No news or research item is a personal recommendation to deal.


You may also be interested in: