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Publication of the latest edition of the Investment Trusts Handbook has given me an excuse to update the model investment trust portfolio I started when the first edition was being planned three years ago. The seed capital of £100,000 has grown since January 2017 to £152,500 on 25 November this year, including retained dividend income. The portfolio now consists of 12 investment trusts, up from 10 at the outset, mainly run by longstanding fund managers and widely considered to be among the best in their class. In keeping with the philosophy of my favourite investment mentors, the portfolio is designed to be managed with minimal turnover and this year, apart from recycling the dividend income, I have made only a couple of changes. That follows a move to de-risk the portfolio somewhat in the middle of 2018, which proved to be timely when the stock market fell sharply in the final quarter of 2018. I will be giving regular updates on this and two other portfolios I monitor in 2020. More details shortly on the Money Makers website.
The current sell-off in the US stock market has been both dramatic and exceptional by historical standards, with the pre-Christmas declines making this the worst
So at last the extraordinary market conditions of the last two years – strong equity markets, dormant bond markets and record low volatility – have come to an end. The sharp sell-off in the stock market we have witnessed in the last few days is entirely healthy and long overdue.
Gerald Kaye, the subject of my latest Property Chronicle interview, is a 20-year veteran at Helical plc (formerly Helical Bar) and has been CEO since July 2016. His office overlooks Hanover Square, which today still looks like a bombsite, thanks to the ongoing Crossrail construction work. Were it not for the construction site, however, he could look directly across the square at the Knight Frank office where he started work in the property business some 40 years ago. What drew him to a career in property, I start by asking? “I suppose I got into the property business because I was brought up in lovely countryside and my mother’s cousin was a land agent. I thought it sounded like a good way of life”.
Charlie Morris, Investment Director at Netscape Capital, and former head of asset allocation at HSBC, joins me for a wide-ranging discussion of global market trends in my latest Money Makers podcast, one of my regular big picture discussions with leading financial market participants. We cover oil prices, politics, interest rates, value versus growth and a fair bit more in the 30-minute podcast (Charlie speaks very well and pretty fast). In his view, all the variables are connected, but it is the future path of oil prices that holds the key to your asset allocation choices now.