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BLOG: Eight fund ideas to give your ISA a last minute boost

Paloma Kubiak
Written By:
Paloma Kubiak

Many of us are prone to leaving things until the last minute and ISA investors are no exception. We’ve all had since 6 April 2022 to invest up to £20,000 in an ISA wrapper, but a surprisingly large number of people still leave it until the last few weeks – or even days – of the tax year.

As we all know, more haste can mean less speed and, in the case of ISAs, missing out altogether: you cannot carry forward your ISA allowance into the next tax year. So either use it or you’ll lose it.

With just three days to go until the 5 April deadline, here are eight ideas that could give your ISA a last minute boost…

1) Schroder Oriental Income

If you are looking to add a growth element to your ISA, Asian equities are an option. The economic headwinds the region faced last year have started to fade, and growth is set to accelerate to 4.7% in 2023.

According to the IMF, “this will make Asia and the Pacific by far the most dynamic of the world’s major regions and a bright spot in a slowing global economy”.

Add to this attractive valuations and a decent dividend yield, and the prospects look good. Schroder Oriental Income investment trust is set up to benefit from all these aspects and is worth considering for a long-term allocation to the region.

2) FTF Martin Currie European Unconstrained

European equities have performed well so far this year, bouncing back as investor sentiment has improved. FTF Martin Currie European Unconstrained fund offers a focused, high conviction portfolio of quality growth medium and large European equities, with no constraints on regional or country allocations.

Manager Zehrid Osmani takes a long-term approach, and his belief is that it’s important to avoid short-term noise and focus on a five- to ten-year time horizon.

3) IFSL Marlborough Global Innovation

If you like the idea of investing in the next big idea, this portfolio of fast growing, innovative companies is worth a look. IFSL Marlborough Global Innovation has a heavy weight to technology firms, but it will invest in innovative disruptive companies from any sector.

The fund can invest globally but most of the investments are in the US or the UK. At least 50% of the fund must be invested in smaller companies. Themes identified by the team include digitisation of media, cybersecurity, fraud detection, digital payments, water conservation, US online gambling markets, hybrid cloud services, automation, and radio frequency technology.

4) LF Montanaro Better World

More conscientious investors may like to put their money into businesses whose products or services are making a positive impact on the world.  The team running the fund has identified six impact ‘themes’: environmental protection, the green economy, healthcare, innovative technologies, nutrition and well-being.

In order to stay true to these themes, the team will also exclude companies that are causing harm, such as those involved in tobacco, weapons and fossil fuels extraction.

5) Ninety One Global Gold

Gold has historically been a great preserver of capital when there is high inflation. It is also seen as a hedge against central bank mistakes – which is a distinct possibility today as they wrestle the conflicting needs of cash-strapped populations and persistently high inflation.

Ninety One Global Gold fund’s philosophy is that investing in gold equities is better than investing in gold itself. The manager believes that gold equities offer leverage to the gold price – so if you believe in gold, you are better off owning gold equities. In addition, unlike physical gold, many gold miners pay a dividend and these pay-outs have been rising in recent years.

6) Janus Henderson Absolute Return

Worried that equities have further to fall but don’t want to miss out on a subsequent bounce? Janus Henderson Absolute Return could be an option. It is a long/short global equity fund with a UK bias, that aims to deliver a positive absolute return over rolling 12-month periods.

The managers look to identify stocks that will either exceed or fall short of analysts’ expectations and construct a portfolio of both long (profit when the share price goes up) and short (profit when the share price goes down) positions.

7) Jupiter Strategic Bond

Investors preferring to invest in fixed income rather than equities may like to consider a fund that can invest in any type of bond without restriction. Jupiter Strategic Bond is a flexible ‘go-anywhere’ fund that allows the manager considerable freedom to exploit opportunities across global bond markets.

The aim is to achieve a moderate income, but with the prospect for growth. The manager is quite cautious in his approach and emphasises limiting potential losses in tough markets.

8) VT Momentum Diversified Income

If you want to hedge your bets, why not pick a multi-asset fund and let a professional investor pick which assets to invest in? The objective of the VT Momentum Diversified Income fund is to produce a high level of regular income, with the prospect of preserving the real value of capital in the long-term.

The managers have a value-focused style and will invest across all asset classes including UK and overseas equities, fixed income, property and specialist investments held through third-party funds. Save for the regulatory requirements, this is a go-anywhere portfolio without any constraints.

Finally, if you’re still unsure about taking the plunge, remember you can invest in a cash ISA and transfer the money to a stocks and shares ISA at a later date.

Darius McDermott is managing director of FundCalibre