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Many Asian equity markets have rebounded from the sharp falls in late March, when panicked investors fled risk assets. Fiscal and stimulus measures by policy makers throughout the world in response to the coronavirus outbreak renewed investors’ appetites, although the sustainability of the markets’ recovery is uncertain.
Asia’s markets, in particular China A-shares, have also benefited from a perception that the region is getting back to normal at a faster rate than other countries, despite recent increases in Covid-19 infection numbers.
The MSCI AC Asia ex-Japan index is up 6.24% so far this year, compared with a 2.33% rise by the MSCI AC World index. China’s domestic equity market, represented by the CSI 300 index, has been one of the best performers, surging 17.15% in US dollar terms since 1 January, according to FE Fundinfo.
Against this backdrop, FSA asked Isaac Poole, global chief investment officer at Oreana Portfolio Advisory Services, to discuss two funds with broad Asia ex-Japan mandates.
He selected a couple of large, long-standing products with well-respected managers: the Fidelity Asia Focus Fund and the First State Asian Equity Plus Fund.
Specialist research firm Morningstar describes the Fidelity product as “led by one of the best Asian equity managers who applies a well-codified and consistent investment approach”.
Similarly, it notes that the First State fund “is backed by a talented manager, strong investment team, and a time-tested investment process”.
|Managers||Dhananjay Phadnis||Martin Lau, Richard Jones|
|Three-year cumulative return||25.0%||23.84%|
|Three-year annualised return||7.38%||7.28%|
|Three-year annualised alpha||4.04||4.19|
|Three-year annualised volatility||19.31%||16.14%|
|Three-year information ratio||0.72||0.84|
|Morningstar star rating||****||*****|
|Morningstar analyst rating||silver||silver|
|FE Crown fund rating||****||****|
|OCF (retail share class)||1.93%||1.58%|