Top 10 most popular investment funds - March 2017

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 Top 10 most popular investment funds - March 2017

Money Observer Rated Fund Fundsmith Equity topped the table of most-bought funds for the twelfth consecutive month in March. 

The fund has over half of its assets in US equities and is managed by highly regarded investor Terry Smith. Ever since it toppled CF Woodford Equity Income, it has been the most popular fund with Interactive Investor customers. 

Neil Woodford's eponymous open-ended fund, CF Woodford Equity Income – which launched in June 2014 – took second place once again. The UK equity income fund gained 2.3% over one month to 31 March and 12.6% over one year.

There was just one new entrant in the top 10 most-bought funds in March and it may not come as a surprise that it was Neil Woodford's new fund: CF Woodford Income Focus. It sits in the Specialist sector and was the eighth most-bought fund in March.

The new fund, which was launched last month, aims to deliver an income of 5p per share for every £1 invested in its first full calendar year in 2018. From then onwards Woodford will aim to deliver modest sustainable growth in per share income. 

Four out of the top 10 most-bought funds were passive choices. The third place in the list was once again taken by Vanguard LifeStrategy 80% Equity, which focuses on North American equities, UK equities and European ex UK equities as well as global bonds.

Money Observer Rated Fund Lindsell Train Global Equity climbed one spot to be fourth on the list. Jointly managed by Michael Lindsell and Nick Train since its launch in March 2011, the fund returned 6.6% over six months to 31 March and 26.8% over one year.

It was closely followed by Jupiter India, which went up by four spots to fifth place. The fund gained 7.9% over the last month and is up by an astonishing 136.7% over the last three years.

With this year's Brexit negotiations, uncertainty around Trump's policies, and looming elections across Europe, investors have been turning to emerging market funds. In India specifically, new tax reforms are seen as a positive development for the economy.

Artemis Global Income remained in the sixth slot. It benefits from a global spread, with one third of its holdings in US equities, about 13% in UK equities and 8% in German equities, and is currently yielding around 3%. 

Vanguard LifeStrategy 100% Equity dropped two spots to take the seventh position in March's list. The ninth position was also taken by a passive fund, HSBC FTSE All Share Index, which went up one slot and gained 8.6% over three months.  

And finally, the tenth place was taken by another tracker, Vanguard FTSE Developed World ex UK, which dropped three places. It has a focus specifically on the developed economies, including 62% in US equities and 10% in Japanese equities.

Rank Fund IA Sector Change since February Total return 1m to 31 March Total return 3yr to 28 February (%)
1 Fundsmith Equity Global -- 2.2 95.6
2 CF Woodford Equity Income UK equity income -- 2.3 n/a
3 Vanguard LifeStrategy 80% Equity Mixed Investment 40%-85% Shared -- 0.7 42.2
4 Lindsell Train Global Equity Global 1 2.3 72.4
5 Jupiter India Specialist 4 7.9 136.7
6 Artemis Global Income Global Equity Income -- 1.6 51.2
7 Vanguard LifeStrategy 100% Equity Global -3 0.8 49.2
8 CF Woodford Income Focus Specialist New entry n/a n/a
9 HSBC FTSE All Share Index FTSE All Share 1 1.3 24.1
10 Vanguard FTSE Developed World ex UK FTSE Developed ex UJ -3 0.6 60.5

This article was originally published in our sister magazine Money Observer. Click here to subscribe.

This article is for information and discussion purposes only and does not form a recommendation to invest or otherwise. The value of an investment may fall. The investments referred to in this article may not be suitable for all investors, and if in doubt, an investor should seek advice from a qualified investment adviser.

Fund Data
Name1 Year (%)3 Years (%)5 Years (%)Rating
--- star(s)
Fundsmith Equity11.8474.36128.265 star(s)
HSBC FTSE All Share Idx7.5124.5442.30N/A star(s)
LF Woodford Eqty Inc-10.423.56-1 star(s)
Lindsell Train Global Equity19.5671.65122.035 star(s)

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