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Aegon Ethical Equity Fund Class B - Income (GBP)

Sell:171.34p Buy:171.34p Change: 0.34p (0.20%)
Prices as at 26 January 2021
Sell:171.34p
Buy:171.34p
Change: 0.34p (0.20%)
You can buy or sell holdings in this fund through a Stocks and Shares ISA, Lifetime ISA, SIPP or Fund and Share Account
Prices as at 26 January 2021
Sell:171.34p
Buy:171.34p
Change: 0.34p (0.20%)
Prices as at 26 January 2021
You can buy or sell holdings in this fund through a Stocks and Shares ISA, Lifetime ISA, SIPP or Fund and Share Account
The selling price currently displayed is higher than the buying price. This can occur temporarily for a variety of reasons; shortly before the market opens, after the market closes or because of extraordinary price volatility during the trading day.

Our view on this Fund

This fund is on the Wealth Shortlist of funds our analysts believe have the potential to outperform their peers over the long term. However, this is not a recommendation to buy.

Please note the fund currently holds shares in Hargreaves Lansdown PLC.

Investing ethically often involves avoiding certain companies or even entire sectors. These constraints mean striking a balance between investing ethically and delivering strong performance is no easy task. We think Audrey Ryan is one of few fund managers who have handled the constraints of an ethical fund well over the long run.

She's been at the helm of the Aegon Ethical Equity Fund for more than two decades and is supported by a stable and well-resourced team. We think this fund could deliver strong returns for long-term investors.

Our view on the sector

Funds in the Responsible Investment sector take a variety of approaches. Some invest in companies that are well-managed and take their commitments to the environment and society seriously, others simply look to avoid the worst offenders. Some even try to invest only in companies making a positive impact in the world, like green energy producers, or companies that clean and reuse water.

Responsible investing offers the possibility of making money in a way that's in line with your views and beliefs. And it's becoming more and more popular. But 'responsible' means different things to different people. An industry that seems abhorrent to one person might seem like a necessary evil to others. That's why you'll need to clarify each fund's approach and make sure it's consistent with your views before you invest.

Performance Analysis

Over two thirds of the UK's largest companies are excluded from the fund's investment universe on ethical grounds. The fund therefore has a long-term bias towards higher-risk small and medium-sized companies. Our analysis suggests this has helped the fund perform better than the UK stock market over the long term. It can cause more volatility though.

The manager invested a large chunk of the fund in cash during the financial crisis and this offered some shelter from the worst of the market falls. She was slow to reinvest this cash though and the fund subsequently lagged the broader UK stock market. The fund also did a good job of sheltering investors' money amid the coronavirus pandemic. Ryan's investments in the technology and industrials sectors performed particularly well, according to our analysis. The fund also benefited from a lack of exposure to the oil & gas sector, which performed poorly.

Overall, Ryan has a solid track record and we think she will do a good job over the long term. That said, the fund's exclusions mean performance will differ from that of the broader UK stock market. When the excluded areas are out of favour, we would expect the fund to perform well, although the reverse is also true.

Investment Philosophy

The Kames team look at the effects a company's activities can have on the environment and society and use a strict screening process to find suitable companies. Audrey Ryan then selects the ones with the best long-term prospects, taking into account her views on the UK economy.

Process and Portfolio Construction

This fund uses a 'negative screening' approach. That means it won't invest in any companies involved in any activities deemed unethical. From tobacco and alcohol producers to munitions manufacturers and companies that use animal testing.

Below is a more detailed list of the companies that the fund wont invest in.

Animal welfare - companies that provide animal testing services, make or sell animal-tested products, are involved in intensive farming, operate abattoirs or slaughterhouses or sell meat, poultry, fish or dairy

Military - companies that make armaments, nuclear weapons or similar strategic products

Nuclear power - companies that provide important services to, or own or operate, nuclear facilities

Environment - companies that excessively damage the environment, in breach of internationally recognised conventions on biodiversity or not tackling climate change

Political donations - companies that have made political donations of more than £25,000 in the last year

Genetic engineering - Companies that have patented genes

Gambling - companies with investments in betting shops, casinos or amusement arcades which account for more than 10% of their total business

Alcohol - companies where more than 10% of their total business involves brewing, distillation or sale of alcohol

Tobacco - companies where more than 10% of their business involves growing, processing or selling tobacco

Pornography - companies that provide adult entertainment services

Debt - banks with exposure to large amounts of corporate or Third World debt

Oppressive regimes - companies operating in countries with poor human rights records or with no established policies on human rights issues

question mark Manager Track Record Based on HL Quantitative Research

  • Aegon Ethical Equity A Acc
  • FTSE All-Share TR
FROM: TO:


Fund Track Record

26/01/16 to 26/01/17 26/01/17 to 26/01/18 26/01/18 to 26/01/19 26/01/19 to 26/01/20 26/01/20 to 26/01/21
Annual return 8.08% 12.50% -11.43% 25.55% -2.15%

Please remember past performance is not a guide to future returns. Where no data is shown, figures are not available. This information is provided to help you choose your own investments, remember they can fall as well as rise in value so you may not get back the original amount invested.

Fund Management Group Comment

Aegon Asset Management is a large global investment manager which runs fixed income, equity, property and multi-asset funds for a clients based across Europe, the Americas and Asia. Aegon has a rich heritage of responsible investing. Over 30 years they've built a comprehensive approach which involves considering the environmental, social and governance (ESG) risks of the companies they invest in and engaging with those companies to drive better outcomes for investors.

Information about the fund

Fund manager biography

manager photo
Manager Name: Audrey Ryan
Manager start date: 1 January 1999
Manager located in: Edinburgh

Audrey Ryan is an investment manager in the UK Equities team with responsibility for managing several funds, including the Kames Ethical Equity Fund and Kames UK Opportunities Fund. In addition, Audrey has analysis duties for the travel & leisure sector, and is a small-cap specialist. She joined us in 1997 from General Accident where she was a UK small companies portfolio manager. Audrey studied Accounting at Napier University, is a qualified chartered accountant and has an MSc in Investment Analysis.

Data policy - All information should be used for indicative purposes only. You should independently check data before making any investment decision. HL cannot guarantee that the data is accurate or complete, and accepts no responsibility for how it may be used. Benchmark data provided subject to this disclaimer.
You can buy or sell holdings in this fund through a Stocks and Shares ISA, Lifetime ISA, SIPP or Fund and Share Account