In the majority of cases I use investment funds such as OEICS (Open Ended Investment Companies)/Unit Trusts or Exchange Traded Funds, which are regulated investments available on secure FCA approved advised platforms. If we’re talking about investing in equities/shares, these ‘funds’ are essentially companies that specialise in investing in companies. Ultimately the goal is to be invested in a selection of successful companies around the world.
I have a researched set of funds which I have identified from the whole of the market, which I use for myself and my accumulation clients. My monitoring and management of the portfolio as well as research of the market is ongoing.
When building a portfolio, I look ‘under the bonnet’ of the funds and study the data such as the underlying holdings/companies, sectors, regions, track record, volatility, management and investment philosophy. I then analyse how a selection of funds that have demonstrated their value over the long term will work together as a whole. There may be adjustments to the portfolio and to the funds list over time, but the overriding strategy is ‘buy and hold’.
I do not believe in:
- Timing the market
- Speculation and predictions
- ‘buying opportunities’ for a quick profit.
- Being swayed by news or articles
- Short term thinking
- Short term analysis
- Investing in everything under the sun.
Diversification is important and there are many sectors and industries to invest in, but diversification overkill results in investing in areas which not worth the volatility and in my experience reduces growth potential overall. A lot of the success of my portfolios is down to deciding what not to invest in. I prefer funds with conviction who invest in companies/sectors they understand well and have proven to be successful at it over a long period of time.
Currently I exclude the funds/sectors which are listed below. With these types of funds, over the years I have not considered the returns as worth the volatility or risk compared to what is offered in the developed markets over the long term.
- Emerging markets
- Smaller Companies
- Property funds
- New funds
There is no one key to success, but in my experience, the above are all contributing factors and increase the chances of good, consistent returns and although no one can avoid volatility or corrections, it is possible to influence levels of volatility and/or avoid certain unnecessary risks.
I have no bias towards managed or passive funds. I take each fund in each sector and asset class on its own merits when building a portfolio. I have built, used and invested in managed, passive and blended portfolios. My only goal is for my clients to be invested in the optimum and appropriate portfolios for growing and protecting their wealth.