NAV on 2021/03/01
|NAV on 2021/02/26
|52 week high on 2021/02/17
|52 week low on 2020/03/19
|Total Expense Ratio on 2019/12/31
|Total Expense Ratio (performance fee) on 2019/12/31
Ninety One Fund Managers SA (RF) (Pty) Ltd.
Peer group average
Chris is the co-head of SA Equity & Multi Asset within the 4Factor team at Ninety One. He is the lead portfolio manager for our SA multi-asset strategies. He joined the firm in 2005 having left Futuregrowth Asset Management, where he served as head of equities and portfolio manager from 2001. When he first joined RMB Asset Management (RMBAM) in 1993, he spent nine years as an analyst, portfolio manager and ultimately, director. During this time, he managed a number of portfolios including balanced portfolios for many retirement funds, as well as the RMB General Equity Unit Trust. Still with RMBAM, he relocated to Cape Town in 2000 to take responsibility for the Public Investment Corporation equity portfolio outsourced by Futuregrowth, before formally joining Futuregrowth in 2001. Following the completion his articles, he joined JD Anderson stockbrokers as a banks/insurance analyst in 1990. Chris graduated from the University of Cape Town with a Bachelor of Commerce degree and holds a Bachelor of Computations (Certificate in Theory of Accounting) degree (with Honours) from the University of South Africa. Chris is a Chartered Accountant (SA) and is also a CFA Charterholder.
Lazarus is a portfolio manager responsible for the Namibia Balanced Strategy within our SA Equity & Multi-Asset team at Ninety One. He joined the firm as an analyst, responsible for Pan Africa equities. Lazarus has earned an Executive Master in Business Administration from IE Business School, Madrid, Spain and also holds a Bachelor of Business Administration in Economics and Business Management from the University of South Africa.
Investec Namibian Managed comment - Mar 09
Market review Economic news in South Africa continued to deteriorate over the quarter. The release of fourth quarter GDP numbers confirmed the sharp slowdown experienced in the second half of 2008. Demand remained under pressure in the first three months of 2009. Policy makers responded with two interest rate cuts of 100 basis points each during the quarter. South African bonds followed global yields higher after reaching record lows in December. While prospects of weak growth and falling inflation continue to provide a bond-friendly environment, the market remains sensitive to the impact of a rapid increase in government spending and concomitant future funding requirements. The All Bond Index lost 5.1% over the quarter. The listed property sector (-1.4%) fared somewhat better, but could not escape deteriorating sector fundamentals. Cash, as measured by the STeFI, returned 0.9% over the quarter.
South African equities weakened for the third consecutive quarter, with the All Share Index losing 4.2% year to date. Both financials (-7%) and industrials (-9.2%) ended the quarter in negative territory. Resource counters clawed back some of their losses sustained in the second half of 2008 to end up 1.6%. Gold mining (22.8%), platinum mining (9.6%) and pharmaceuticals (22.4%) were the only sectors to gain over the quarter. While general miners (-4.6%) performed broadly in line with the overall market, it was the domestic oriented sectors that fell most with banks (-9.8%), retailers (-7.6%) and the construction sector (-10.6%) all ending down.
The Namibian market saw a positive rebound towards the end of the quarter, with the NSX Overall Index returning 14.6% in March. However, the earlier losses weighed heavily on the quarterly performance numbers, resulting in the Overall Index returning a negative 12.7% over the quarter.
We have witnessed the South African Reserve Bank governor becoming increasingly dovish with regard to the prospects of further interest rate cuts. The governor of the Bank of Namibia followed suit, slashing the bank rate by 100 basis points in March. The market is now pricing in sharply lower interest rates - much to the relief of banks which gained 14.6% in March and general financials which rose 13.4% during the last month of the quarter.
The local index continued to gain after a positive performance in 2008, ending the quarter up 2.8%. Namibia Breweries returned 5.3% for the quarter, while First National Bank ended the quarter up 2.5%. Namibia Breweries' performance was underpinned by fantastic results in the first half of the year, which saw operating margins expand in a period characterised by high interest rates and high input costs. The IJG Bond Index gave up some of its fourth quarter gains to end nearly 4% weaker, while cash, as measured by IJG Money Market Index, returned a positive 2.4% over the quarter under review.
Portfolio review We entered the year with a relatively full equity weighting on positive valuation grounds, positioned for the expected medium-term recovery. Although markets were already cheap it did not stop equities falling further as economic data at times came in worse than expected. This environment meant that returns for the quarter were negative. However, as a result of maintaining a relatively full equity position we benefited from the equity market rebound in March. Infrastructure related shares were again sold down as potential mining expansion projects were cancelled with the performance of Wilson Bayly, Aveng and Group Five in particular detracting from portfolio value. We did, however, continue to benefit from holding retail related shares with Mr Price and Truworths doing well.
The rand/Namibian dollar exhibited considerable volatility over the quarter, but managed to end the quarter little changed against the US dollar. We were not aggressively positioned for rand weakness. Your portfolio benefited from the Investec London team, which manages your offshore assets, having a very good quarter relative to their peers. The Four Factor equity selection process came back with a vengeance to deliver good stock selection.
Portfolio activity There were two relatively significant moves during the quarter in terms of asset allocation. Firstly, we trimmed back equity exposure by approximately 5% just before quarter end after the strong run in March. We took profits on a shorter-term view that the coming poor earnings season may well provide an opportunity to buy back in at better levels and lock in some value add. Secondly, for the first time in a while bonds look better value in the face of lower-than-expected inflation and interest rates. From around the 8% yield level we believe that bonds offer a better prospective return than cash and consequently we increased bonds, reducing cash. Property exposure was marginally reduced, and for those funds that allow offshore exposure we kept the offshore weighting at approximately 10%.
Over the quarter we reduced the infrastructure exposure by selling Murray & Roberts and Barlows. We trimmed your retail share exposure, but retained the positioning to lower interest rates by buying bonds. With the green shoots of a global economic recovery in evidence we increased exposure to global cyclical shares, buying more Anglos and BHP Billiton, but sold Impala Platinum after the 30% run in March. Gold exposure was cut back by selling some AngloGold in line with the recovery of the risk trade. We remain underweight global defensive shares, with a view that they are too expensive and the next move is a global economic recovery. Lastly, we purchased Old Mutual as we think that the share is cheap enough to allow for significant margin for error and that the company has enough capital and liquidity to continue as a going concern.
Portfolio positioning Investors are still very wary; the consensus view is that the recent improvement in equities is merely a bear market rally. As a result many investors are still underweight equity waiting for the pull back to enter the market, which may well mean that the market has further to run. Monetary and fiscal stimulus packages are also expected to bear fruit towards year end. Already the economic data is no longer universally worse than expected, but rather more mixed. Consequently, we are likely to keep a dominant portion of your money in shares, tactically trading at the margin to add additional value.
The bond position is expected to do well as we get further confirmation of the weak economy operating well below capacity and lower inflation. It is likely that we will continue to trim back your property holding over time. We do not anticipate holding a large gold position as the 'end-of-the-world-trade' is drawing to a close and we do not fear a resurgence of global inflation.
Your portfolio is still predominantly positioned to benefit from lower interest rates, but will also gain from an improvement in global equity markets. The portfolio still has some exposure to the fixed infrastructure cycle, albeit less than previously. We remain infrastructure 'believers', especially at these low share prices and with Eskom's spend set to continue with the recent approval of a third new coal-fired power station to be built. One of the next moves is to buy more global cyclical and resource shares once we are satisfied that the full downward earnings revisions are fully priced in.
After quarter end the rand/Namibian dollar strengthened relative to the US dollar and we took the opportunity to increase the offshore exposure of applicable funds from 10% to 15%. We are still not overly bearish on the rand, but for longer-term diversification purposes we are comfortable with this move.
The Ninety One Managed Fund Namibia aims to provide investors with stable growth of capital over the long term. The objective is to achieve returns well in excess of the fund's peer group average, measured over three to five year periods.
The fund invests in Namibian and South African equity, bonds and money market instruments, as well as international equity and fixed interest investments.