The fund seeks to take advantage of opportunities across global stock markets. Simon Somerville, lead fund manager, is responsible for choosing the geographical weightings in conjunction with the Jupiter Merlin Multi-Manager team headed by John Chatfeild-Roberts. Specialist Jupiter managers are responsible for stock selection in each region or sector and Simon Somerville lets them run their allocation of the portfolio as they see fit.
While the fund has a good long-term track record, in recent years the fund's performance has disappointed and it has struggled to add value over its benchmark, although this should not be seen as an indicator of future returns. In part, this is due to the Jupiter Merlin team's main asset allocation decision to hold lower exposure to the US stock market compared with the fund's benchmark. This has hindered performance as the US market has performed strongly over the past few years.
|Annual percentage growth|
| Feb 10 -
| Feb 11 -
| Feb 12 -
| Feb 13 -
| Feb 14 -
|Jupiter Global Managed||18.9%||-4.1%||15.4%||11.3%||12.6%|
Past performance is not a guide to future returns. Source: Lipper IM to 02/02/2015
In light of this, Jupiter is taking steps to improve performance. Stephen Mitchell, who recently joined Jupiter's global equities team, will take over lead management of the fund on 1 March 2015 and he will make significant changes to the fund. He has had some prior experience investing in global equities, though he has held a variety of roles throughout his career.
Stephen Mitchell will be responsible for individual stock selection and the overall positioning of the fund. Jupiter's specialist managers will remain a valuable resource, but no longer have direct involvement in running the fund.
Stephen Mitchell will aim to identify the highest quality businesses from across the globe. His focus is on companies with strong balance sheets, good franchises and an ability to take market share from smaller competitors, while companies should also be listed in countries with good levels of corporate governance. He will also tend to favour businesses which have demonstrated an ability to pay a stable dividend - this means the fund will have a greater focus on income, though it will not have an income target.
Overall, the manager aims to construct a portfolio that could offer some shelter in weaker markets, by investing in companies that have proven resilient throughout an economic cycle. The portfolio will also become more concentrated, from 279 stocks to 35-50. This means each will have a greater impact on performance, though it is a higher risk approach.
We are pleased Jupiter is taking action with a view to improving performance, and view these changes as positive. That said, our level of conviction in this fund is not as high as it was previously. We would also like to see Stephen Mitchell settle into his new role and develop a track record at Jupiter before we make an assessment of his abilities as a fund manager.
In the meantime, we feel it is prudent to remove the fund from the Wealth 150 while we monitor its progress. We stress this should not be taken as a signal to make any changes to a portfolio – investors should make their own decisions about whether or not a fund remains suitable for their personal objectives. Our preferred funds for new investment in the IA Global sector currently feature on the Wealth 150.
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