Interactive Investor

10 hottest ISA shares, funds and trusts: week ended 15 March 2024

We reveal the 10 most-popular shares, funds and investment trusts added to ISAs on the interactive investor platform during the past week.

18th March 2024 13:32

Lee Wild from interactive investor

With ISA season under way and tax year-end fast approaching, we look at the investments ii customers have been buying within their ISAs during the previous week. The data includes only real-time trades, not regular investing instructions, and combines the use of both existing funds and new money.

Top 10 shares in ISAs

There’s a new number one this week, and they’re straight in at first place after a one-month absence from the top 10.

Vodafone Group (LSE:VOD) has been a popular share among investors betting that the struggling business can be turned around. Disposals and action taken by CEO Margherita Della Valle have been welcome but haven’t managed to budge the share price much.

However, there was excitement Friday when the company announced it is selling the Italian business to Swisscom for €8 billion and returning €4 billion to shareholders via share buybacks.

Della Valle called the sale “the third and final step in the reshaping of our European operations”, adding that “our biggest growth opportunity is in [business to business]”.

Investors won’t like the bigger-than-expected cut in the dividend from next year, from 9 eurocents to 4.5, although the forecast yield is still around 5%. But the management team is doing what’s necessary to get the company back on track. It remains to be seen whether it’s enough. There’s still lots of hard work required here.

An American company that may not have been on investor radars a few months ago has become hard to ignore. 

MicroStrategy Inc Class A (NASDAQ:MSTR) has raced six places up the table to second spot after another eventful few days. It was confirmed that a $500 million offer of convertible senior notes had been increased to $525 million. The company will use the money to buy more bitcoin, which currently trades just below $70,000.

Less than a month ago, Microstrategy shares could be bought for under $700. Now it’s over $1,700 after a 25% surge in just the last week. While things have clearly worked up to now, there are those that are becoming concerned about this high-risk strategy, among them strategists at JPMorgan. 

They wrote recently: “We believe debt-funded bitcoin purchases by MicroStrategy add leverage and froth to the current crypto rally and raise the risk of more severe deleveraging in a potential downturn in the future.” 

Elsewhere, high-flying NVIDIA Corp (NASDAQ:NVDA) is down eight places from top spot last week. After coming within touching distance of $1,000 this month, the stock is back below $900. A bit of profit taking after such an incredible run from under $500 at the start of 2024 is unsurprising.

And finally, Lloyds Banking Group (LSE:LLOY) is back in the top 10 for the first time in three weeks. The shares are up 15% in the past month at prices rarely seen in the past four years as investors back the sector again.

Top 10 funds and trusts in ISAs

Terry Smith’s Fundsmith Equity took the top spot in last week’s most-bought fund and investment trusts' list, as performance continues to impress this year. The £25 billion fund is up 8.9% in 2024 compared with 6.5% for the MSCI World index. This follows three calendar years of underperformance against its benchmark.

Another riser was Vanguard LifeStrategy 80% Equity up two places to second place. This is a popular “core” fund for investors looking for cheap access to equity and bond markets around the world. 

The biggest faller last week was Jupiter India, which fell five places from the top spot the week before. The drop was linked to a rare off week for the strategy, with the units falling nearly 5% in value. 

Growth trusts Scottish Mortgage Ord (LSE:SMT) and Polar Capital Technology Ord (LSE:PCT) remained popular, holding on to third and eighth place respectively, while L&G Global Technology Index trust rose one place. Tech shares are still in favour after a stellar 2023, boosted by developments in artificial intelligence (AI) and hopes for lower interest rates by the summer. 

Two new collectives - Royal London Short Term Money Market and Vanguard US Equity Index - made the list again after yo-yoing in and out of the top 10 recently. 

Dropping off the list are City of London and Greencoat UK Wind. 

Funds and trusts section written by ii’s deputy collectives editor Sam Benstead.

These articles are provided for information purposes only.  Occasionally, an opinion about whether to buy or sell a specific investment may be provided by third parties.  The content is not intended to be a personal recommendation to buy or sell any financial instrument or product, or to adopt any investment strategy as it is not provided based on an assessment of your investing knowledge and experience, your financial situation or your investment objectives. The value of your investments, and the income derived from them, may go down as well as up. You may not get back all the money that you invest. The investments referred to in this article may not be suitable for all investors, and if in doubt, an investor should seek advice from a qualified investment adviser.

Full performance can be found on the company or index summary page on the interactive investor website. Simply click on the company's or index name highlighted in the article.

Please remember, investment value can go up or down and you could get back less than you invest. If you’re in any doubt about the suitability of a stocks & shares ISA, you should seek independent financial advice. The tax treatment of this product depends on your individual circumstances and may change in future. If you are uncertain about the tax treatment of the product you should contact HMRC or seek independent tax advice.