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BlackRock unveils absolute return emerging markets fund

by Sarah Miloudi on Jan 21, 2013 at 14:32

BlackRock unveils absolute return emerging markets fund

BlackRock has broadened its emerging market range with the launch of an absolute return fund for Sam Vecht and Henry Wigan.

The BSF Emerging Markets Absolute Return fund is being targeted at UK discretionary managers. It aims to deliver a positive absolute return regardless of market conditions by investing in a portfolio of long and short equity positions.

The holdings will either be domiciled in emerging markets or derive the bulk of their earnings there. 

According to the fund’s prospectus, the managers will blend proprietary macroeconomic research with bottom-up company analysis to narrow the universe of stocks down to a basket of up to 70 ‘best ideas’ for the portfolio.

Vecht (pictured), who has been at BlackRock for 13 years, already runs the BGF Emerging Europe and Frontiers funds, and heads the emerging markets specialist team. He has outperformed his typical emerging Europe and Russia peer over three years, delivering 4.7% versus the average manager’s -0.2% return.

Wigan, a macro strategy specialist, joined BlackRock three years ago from 3G Capital and focuses on investments in emerging Europe and Latin America.

Alex Hoctor-Duncan, head of EMEA retail at BlackRock, said the new launch has been designed for investors keen to access emerging markets while keeping volatility down.

He said: ‘The BSF Emerging Markets Absolute Return fund is designed for investors seeking positive absolute returns irrespective of market conditions. This is achieved through a portfolio of long and short emerging market equity exposures, while delivering low volatility.' 

Hoctor-Duncan added: ‘BlackRock’s emerging markets specialist team has a strong track record in this area and we are pleased to be able to offer our clients the opportunity to access these strategies in a Ucits structure.’

The asset manager's latest launch will have a euro and a US dollar share class.  As well as the UK it will be available in Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg and Sweden.

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