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Share Centre – most popular funds in August

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Andy Parsons, head of investment research at The Share Centre, examines the most popular funds on the platform in August.

“The CF Woodford Equity Income fund remained popular with investors in August as investors sought to benefit from a much acclaimed and renowned investment approach. Despite having only launched in June, this clearly shows that investor appetite has remained strong for Neil.

The second most popular fund was the Legal & General International Index Trust. As the name suggests, this is an index tracking fund which aims to replicate the performance of the FTSE World (ex UK) index.

The third and fourth most popular funds both came from the Artemis stable. The Artemis High Income fundseeks to provide an above average and sustainable level of income. The fund has three very experienced managers at the helm, Adrian Frost, Adrian Gosden and Alex Ralph. The core of the portfolio is debt based, with up to 20% invested in equities if desired, and attention placed on the quality and liquidity of individual holdings.

The Artemis Income fund, also managed by Frost and Gosden, who have recently been joined by Nick Shenton, can be truly classed as a giant in the UK Equity Income sector at around £6.7bn. The fund provides investors with an investment management team with a strong and reliable track record and ability to provide a rising level of income. The managers focus primarily on companies within the FTSE 350 and typically look to concentrate the portfolio around 60-90 stocks, thereby ensuring a moderate level of conviction within their choices.

In fifth positionis an ‘all-weather’ bond fund designed to perform across a range of market conditions in the form of the Henderson Strategic Bond fund. Managed by the highly respected pair of John Pattullo and Jenna Barnard, the fund sits within the flexible sterling strategic bond sector. The managers are true debt investors and don’t use the equity flexibility afforded funds within this sector.

The M&G Optimal Income fund, which came in sixth, is simply the behemoth of the Sterling Strategic Bond sector at £22.2bn and managed by the much acclaimed Richard Woolnough. Income investors certainly seem to be diversifying across asset classes and this mandate has the flexibility to include equity exposure, albeit capped to a maximum of 20%.

“The Unicorn UK Income fund also featured last month and focuses on seeking income from smaller companies.Now managed by Fraser Mackersie and Simon Moon, many of the holdings in this fund may be unfamiliar to investors.

The M&G Corporate Bond fund, as per the Optimal Income fundis also managed by Richard Woolnough and again represents a true giant within the Sterling Corporate Bond sector, standing currently at around £5.2bn.

The Rathbone Ethical Bond fund, managed by BrynJones, resides in the Sterling Corporate bond sector.It offers those investors who wish to have ethical considerations taken into account an ideal investment opportunity via a debt based fund.

Finally, in tenth position is the Jupiter Global Managed fund. Global funds are perceived by many as a higher risk than a fund investing solely in the UK, however they offer investors portfolio diversification of regions and sectors. The fund is managed by Simon Somerville, and seeks to invest in companies that have a strong proven management track record and that have strong services and products.”

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