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“Both funds are run by very experienced investment professionals who have seen upturns and downturns in markets over the years,” said Poole.
“They bring a level of calmness and perspective that is especially important in the current environment,” he said.
The JP Morgan strategy is headed by Rick Figuly, who has been with the firm for 25 years. He was appointed lead manager of the fund in 2015, and was joined by Barbara Miller, another 25-year JP Morgan veteran. She subsequently moved internally to concentrate on the firm’s institutional business, and was replaced by Justin Rucker in early 2019, who has 14 years under his belt at JP Morgan.
“Although there have been iterations over time, the JP Morgan fund’s team is stable,” said Poole.
Figuly and Rucker are supported by a group of seasoned portfolio managers and analysts with specialist expertise in investment grade corporate, sovereign and asset-backed securities, he added.
Turning to the Legg Mason fund, the strategy has been led by Richard Booth since his predecessor Andrew Cormack left in September 2018.
“Booth joined Western Asset [the Legg Mason affiliate] in 1990 and has more than two decades experience covering global bond markets,” said Poole.
“He manages his relatively small product as if it is a much larger fund with a rigorous top-down, sovereign macro approach.”
Booth is supported by veteran managers Kenneth Leech, Gordon Brown, and Dean French who have an average of 26 years investment background, and the four are reinforced by around 130 other investment professionals who have been with the firm for many years.
“Moreover, the fund has improved its risk management systems recently,” said Poole.