Martin Currie Global Portfolio Trust’s (MNP’s) performance has improved considerably following the appointment of manager Zehrid Osmani on 1 October 2018, since when he has refined the trust’s investment process. MNP has now outperformed its benchmark over the last one, three, five and 10 years. The manager focuses on high-conviction positions and his long-term horizon helps navigate short-term market volatility. MNP has performed well despite a lack of exposure to the high-profile, large-cap US technology stocks that have led the market. Osmani has generated alpha by investing in some mid-cap stocks that are not particularly well followed, such as US company Masimo (non-invasive patient monitoring technologies), which is now the largest position in the portfolio.
We are living in uncertain times. The ultimate impacts of the coronavirus outbreak are unknown, while a market rally and depressed earnings estimates have left forward P/E valuation multiples looking unattractive. Against such a backdrop, investors may benefit from a focus on high-quality companies that can navigate the current economic uncertainty, and that are trading on reasonable valuations.
◼ Improved investment performance under new manager.
◼ Continued evolution of enhanced proprietary investment process.
◼ More concentrated portfolio and higher active share.
◼ Straightforward equity fund – no gearing, derivatives or unlisted stocks.
◼ Competitive fees and zero discount policy
MNP’s discount increased to a five-year widest point of 10.7% during the coronavirus-led market sell-off, but the trust has now returned to trading close to NAV. Its share price is currently at a 0.4% discount to NAV, which compares to a 0.3% to 0.6% range of discounts over the last one, three and five years, illustrating the effectiveness of the board’s zero discount policy. MNP’s annual distribution has been maintained at 4.2p for the last four financial years and the trust offers a 1.3% dividend yield.