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“The continued personnel turnovers, manager reshuffles, and departures have affected the JP Morgan fund’s underlying sleeves,” said Ge.
However, Ge has confidence in lead manager Michael Schoenhaut and comanagers Eric Bernbaum and Leon Goldfeld. Schoenhaut is the portfolio’s final decision-maker, while Bernbaum focuses on the implementation of the tactical asset-allocation strategy and Goldfeld provides top-down macro views.
Six of the strategy’s underlying managers have left their respective sleeves in the past four years. JP Morgan’s analyst bench is responsible for security selection and provides some continuity, but often these managers were running high-conviction, concentrated strategies that may be difficult to replicate.
In March 2021, the firm named Gary Herbert as a comanager on this strategy. Herbert joined the multi-asset organisation a year before from Brandywine Global Investors, where he specialised in global credit and multisector strategies. Herbert’s promotion follows the departure of Matthew Pallai, who was the fund’s fixed income specialist for less than a year.
The main asset allocator at the Schroders fund, Patrick Brenner will move to London in September to assume a newly created multi-asset leadership role within Schroders. His head of Asia multi-asset position will pass to current deputy Keiko Kondo.
“Brenner has led this strategy since 2015 and his knowledge will be missed, though Kondo is a capable replacement,” said Ge.
She joined Schroders in October 2017 after spending more than a decade at UBS in various leadership roles, which included head of multi-asset Asia Pacific. She has 28 years of industry experience, having managed both multi-asset and income mandates.
“Kondo demonstrated astute cross-asset familiarity during our meetings,” said Ge.
Brenner and Kondo make up an 11-person Asian multi-asset investment team that averages 16 years of experience. The underlying asset class teams remains intact. Equity manager Manish Bhatia brings 27 years of investment experience while the fixed-income sleeve is managed by head of Asian Credit and Emerging Markets Angus Hui, who has 24 years of investment experience. Both are competent but not our favourites within their respective spaces.
They are also supported by a 35-member Asia ex-Japan equity team and a 19-member fixed income investment team.