The global equity income trust, a member of our Super 60, has benefited from the change in macroeconomic conditions.
Sentiment shifting away from high-growth strategies has benefited the value-focused Murray International (LSE:MYI) investment trust, which today reported notable outperformance for its financial year to the end of December.
The global equity income trust’s share price rose by 20.6% over the period, while its underlying investment performance (the net asset value or NAV) returned 8.8%. The trust does not have a benchmark, but referenced the loss of 7.3% for the FTSE All-World index for comparative purposes.
Its progressive dividend has been maintained, with a year-on-year rise of 1.8%. This marks the 18th consecutive year of dividend increases. Its yield is 4.2%, higher than most rivals. The trust is a member of interactive investor’s Super 60 investment ideas.
In addition, a 5:1 share split proposal was announced “in order to assist monthly savers” and to attract “those who are looking to invest smaller amounts, such as younger investors”. The split requires shareholder approval at its annual general meeting (AGM) in April.
In terms of portfolio activity, exposure to Europe was increased to take advantage of opportunities that occurred following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Bruce Stout, the longstanding fund manager of Murray International, said: “New positions were established in Dutch technology company BE Semiconductor (EURONEXT:BESI), in leading global industrial conglomerate Siemens (XETRA:SIE) of Germany and in worldwide food processing company Danone (EURONEXT:BN), in France.
Elsewhere, some profit-taking took place in Asia, emerging markets, and Latin America. However, exposure to companies in the developing world remains notable, at around 40%, which is much higher than most other global equity funds and investment trusts.
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Stout says he is maintaining a “barbell” strategy of owning both growth and cyclical stocks, and is continuing to focus on stocks that own “real assets” and have “pricing power”.
He said: “Structurally, higher inflation is supportive of companies owning real assets and those possessing pricing power, while selective growth companies should benefit from accelerating trends in industrial automation, semiconductor miniaturisation and digital communications.
“The greatest potential for positive cyclical momentum upside surprises can still be identified in Asia and other countries where substantial pent-up demand from prolonged Covid effects still exists. Corporate earnings may be under recessionary threat elsewhere, but scope exists for upwards earnings and dividends revisions in Latin America and Asia. In such regions, sectors and businesses, the portfolio remains meaningfully invested.”
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