Interactive Investor

The top 10 most-popular investment funds: March 2024

Terry Smith is back on top, as global funds dominate March’s most-bought list.

2nd April 2024 12:54

by Sam Benstead from interactive investor

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Fundsmith Equity reclaimed the most-bought fund position in March, moving up one place from second. 

The £25.5 billion fund from Terry Smith is up 9.6% this calendar year, just behind the 9.8% return of the MSCI World index. Its annualised return since launch in 2010 is now 15.8% a year, ahead of the 12% figure for its benchmark.  

Just behind, up two places, was Vanguard LifeStrategy 80% Equity. As the same suggests, it holds 80% in shares, with the remainder in bonds.  

It is one of three Vanguard LifeStrategy funds on the list, with the 60% Equity version in eighth place and the 100% Equity version in 10th. There are five funds in the range that cater to different risk appetites, due to each having a different equity weighting, ranging from 20% to 100%. The funds are low cost, at 0.22% a year.  

Other core, global funds to make the most-bought list last month were HSBC FTSE All World Index (in fifth, up one place) and Fidelity Index World (in ninth, down one). 

These funds differ slightly. The HSBC tracker is an “all world” fund, meaning it has about 7% in emerging markets, while Fidelity’s tracker just owns developed market shares. Fidelity Index World therefore has fewer positions (around 1,500 compared with 3,500), but its focus on developed world shares has meant it has performed better over one and three years. Both cost 0.12% a year.  

L&G Global Technology Index Trust held on to third place. While a star performer due to the artificial intelligence (AI) boom, the portfolio is very concentrated and could therefore be very volatile. It has 17% in Microsoft, 14.9% in Apple and 10.5% in Nvidia.  

Of the 10 most-bought funds in March, just three do not invest globally. 

Jupiter India registered the largest move over the past month, dropping three places from first to fourth. The fund has nearly doubled investors’ money over the past three years, but last month returns were flat. India’s stock market has been enjoying a purple patch over the past couple of years, with strong economic growth one of the big tailwinds.  

Royal London Short Term Money Market was in sixth, down one place. It yields 5.25% by investing in cash-like instruments, such as short-term bonds. Since December 2021, the assets held by interactive investor customers in money market funds, as well as the number of customers investing in the funds, has increased more than four-fold. Check out our guide to find out more about money market funds.  

Elsewhere, Vanguard US Equity Index held on to seventh place. This low-cost fund, with a yearly fee of 0.1%, tracks a broadly representative and well-diversified benchmark. This fund tracks the S&P Total Market Index, made up of over 4,000 constituents including large, mid, small and micro-cap stocks.  

There were no new entries in March.  

Top 10 most-popular investment funds in March 2024 

RankFundIA sector Ranking change since previous monthOne-year return (%)Three-year return (%)
1Fundsmith EquityGlobalUp one15.228
2Vanguard LifeStrategy 80% EquityMixed investment 40%-85% sharesUp two14.219.8
3L&G Global Technology Index TrustTechnologyNo change46.361.4
4Jupiter IndiaIndia/Indian SubcontinentDown three61.299.2
5HSBC FTSE All World IndexGlobalUp one21.633.5
6Royal London Short Term Money MarketShort Term Money MarketDown one5.27.6
7Vanguard US Equity IndexNorth AmericaNo change26.341.1
8Vanguard LifeStrategy 60% EquityMixed investment 40%-85% sharesUp two10.910.5
9Fidelity Index WorldGlobalDown one2440.1
10Vanguard LifeStrategy 100% EquityGlobalDown one17.630.2

Source: interactive investor and FE Analytics. Note: the top 10 is based on the number of “buys” during the month of March.

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.

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