Posted inHead To Head

HEAD-TO-HEAD: Aberdeen vs First State

Fund Selector Asia compares two well-known products that invest in the region: the Aberdeen Global Asia-Pacific Equity Fund and the First State Asia-Pacific Select Fund.

A snapshot of portfolio allocation:

 Performance review






Source: FE Analytics

The Aberdeen fund has delivered lower returns than the First State fund over various time periods until 30 June.

“The Aberdeen fund did not have a good time in the past few years as the team intends to invest in good companies over the long-term, but performance of some holdings lagged the market in the last few years,” said Ng.

The team has preferred not to respond to market fluctuations as long as holdings stand up in terms of fundamentals and valuations, he added.

By comparison, the First State fund has a bias toward growth stocks for the long-term, but tends to react more as the market changes in the short-term, he added.

Even over three- and five-year periods, the Aberdeen fund underperformed the First State fund. 

 Source: FE Analytics

A look at calendar year returns:



Source: FE Analytics

During 2014, the First State product benefited mainly from an overweight position in Taiwan Semiconductor and some Indian stocks such as Kotak Mahindra Bank and Mahindra & Mahindra, he added.

The Aberdeen fund underperformed in 2014 due to its stock selection in the banking sector and also due to exposure to energy and materials companies. Higher exposure in Singapore also detracted from the performance of the Aberdeen fund in 2014, said Ng.

In 2013, the Aberdeen fund underperformed both benchmark and peers. 

“Not holding Tencent was a major detractor as the IT company performed well in 2013. Aberdeen held back from the stock because of high valuation as well as the ownership structure that was not considered good for minority shareholders.”

Part of the Mark Allen Group.