Reforms and easy monetary policy conditions are the two key themes driving most of the markets in Asia, particularly China and India, which have rallied over the past year.
In India, the investor optimism has been driven by expectations of structural reforms following the new government, while in China the government is taking a series of monetary steps to support a reasonable level of economic growth.
China also unveiled a slew of capital market reforms in the form of Stock Connect, expansion of the Renminbi Qualified Foreign Institutional Investor Scheme outside of Hong Kong to other countries, as well as the recent lifting of the QFII quota.
Against this backdrop, Fund Selector Asia lists the top performing funds in the Asia ex-Japan category for the year ended 31 March. Funds registered for sale in Singapore and/or Hong Kong with at least a three-year track record and $50m or more in assets under management were considered for the list, which is based on FE data:
Parvest Equity Best Selection Asia Ex-Japan
The Luxembourg-domiciled fund topped the list with a 52.5% return. The fund has been in operation since 1999 and had $503.5m in AUM as of 27 February.
China and India were the top country allocations with 29.1% and 15.8% weighting, respectively. Financial companies and information technology companies collectively accounted for over half of the portfolio.
The fund’s top holdings were in Hutchinson Whampoa, Samsung Electronics and Hynix Semiconductor.
Alliance Bernstein – Asia Ex-Japan Equity Portfolio
According to the fact sheet, the Luxembourg-domiciled vehicle selects approximately 60-100 companies in the Asia ex-Japan region that are trading at a discount to their long-term earnings potential.
The AB product was launched in 2009 and had $515.5m in assets on 28 February.
The second ranked fund also had the highest allocation to China (38.3%). South Korea was its next preferred country accounting for nearly 21% of the portfolio.
India with a 10.2% weighting was placed fifth in terms of country allocation.
Financials (38.5%), information technology (23.96%), consumer discretionary (12%) were the top sector picks.
Samsung Electronics, China Construction Bank and Bank of China were the top holdings.
Edmond de Rothschild Asia Leaders
The France-based fund had $106.8m in AUM on 27 February and has been in operation since 2011. It seeks to invest in Asian companies that have the potential to become domestic, regional and global leaders in their sectors.
China, India and South Korea were again the most favoured countries accounting for 24.2%, 19.1% and 13.6% of the fund’s assets.
Taiwan Semiconductor, Tencent Holdings and Samsung Electronics were the top holdings.
Eurizon Easyfund Equity Emerging Market Asia
The fund with $122.6m in AUM was incepted in 1999.
China, Korea and Taiwan are the top three country allocations with 31.4%, 29.5% and 22.9% weighting, respectively.
The financial, information technology and consumer discretionary sectors accounted for 27.8%, 26.2% and 19.5% of the portfolio, respectively.
Its top holding are in Samsung Electronics, Taiwan Semiconductor and Tencent Holdings.
Parvest Green Tigers Classic Cap
The fund seeks to invest two-thirds of its assets in companies with technologies, products and services that bring sustainable development solutions to environmental problems in Asia.
The fund house said its portfolio management team favors companies that are developing technologies focusing on the preservation of water, air and soil, and biodiversity.
In terms of country allocation, the fund has invested nearly 37% of its assets in China. Taiwan and South Korea followed with a 23% and 14.3% weighting.
In line with its investment objective, the sector break-down was tilted toward technology companies, which made up 40% of the portfolio. Industrial and utility companies followed with a 26.1% and 20.6% allocation, respectively.
Taiwan Semiconductor, LG Philips LCD and United Microelectronics were the top stock holdings.