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ii Super 60 - Merian North American Equity

ii Super 60 investments

ii Super 60 investments:
Merian North American Equity

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Formal review concluded. This Super 60 Fund is retained. Find out more

Asset Group Asset Sub-Group Investment Category
Equities US equities Core

Selection rationale:

This fund has marginally underperformed peers and the MSCI North American index over one and three years but could offer a genuinely different approach. Its trio of managers, Ian Heslop, Amadeo Alentorn and Mike Servant, who have been at the helm of the fund since 2004, follow the money – ascertaining what type of stocks other investors are buying and then buying the best ones in those categories.

The team’s systematic approach is to assess companies against criteria including stock price valuation, balance sheet quality, growth characteristics, efficient use of capital, analyst sentiment and supportive market trends. These characteristics are analysed to produce a single return forecast for each stock. They then build a diversified portfolio of around 350 mainly larger company shares expected to outperform in the current economic environment. How the characteristics of stocks are weighted depends on historical factors and prevailing conditions. Weightings are dynamic, tilting the portfolio towards the characteristics that are likely to be most effective at the time.

They have proven their ability to perform well during several challenging periods for active managers, often characterised by sharp style rotations. 

January 2020

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Formal review concluded

In line with our stated methodology, Merian North American Equity fund was put under formal review on 25 February 2020 following the announcement that Merian has been acquired by Jupiter and a co-manager of the fund will be leaving the business.

Interactive investor’s selection team has been closely monitoring the situation and speaking to Merian to gain a better understanding of what changes, if any, are likely to take place after the acquisition, that could impact the fund’s team structure, philosophy or process. The details confirmed with Merian are relatively high level, and we are comfortable that the key fund managers are well committed and incentivised which should encourage team stability and continuity of the investment process under Jupiter’s corporate umbrella. As a result, the fund is no longer under formal review, and it will remain on our Super 60 list.

Risk warnings

Past performance of the underlying constituents is not a guarantee of future performance. The value of investments, and any income from them, can fall as well as rise so you could get back less than you invest. 

Annual performance can be found on the factsheet of each fund, trust or ETF. Simply click on the asset’s name and then the performance tab. 

The information we provide in the ii Super 60 investments list is an opinion provided by ii or one of its partners on whether to buy a specific investment. Please note that none of the opinions we provide are a “personal recommendation”, which means that we have not assessed your investing knowledge and experience, your financial situation or your investment objectives. Therefore you should ensure that any investment decisions you make are suitable for your personal circumstances.

If you are unsure about the suitability of a particular investment or think that you need a personal recommendation, you should speak to a suitably qualified financial advisor. 

Any changes to the ii Super 60 investments list and the rationale behind those decisions will be communicated through the Quarterly Investment Outlook.

Details of all recommendations issued by ii during the previous 12 month period can be found here.

ii adheres to a strict code of conduct. Members of ii staff may hold shares in companies mentioned in the ii Super 60 investments list, which could create a conflict of interest. Any member of staff intending to complete some research about any financial instrument in which they have an interest are required to disclose such interest to ii. We will at all times consider whether such interest impairs the objectivity of the recommendation.

In addition, staff involved in the production of this ii Super 60 list are subject to a personal account dealing restriction. This prevents them from placing a transaction in the specified instrument(s) for five working days before and after an investment is included or amended and made public within the list. This is to avoid personal interests conflicting with the interests of the recipients of this ii Super 60 investments list.