Daniel Hanbury and Richard Staveley are ranked 12th out of 38 fund managers by Citywire over three years in the UK Smaller Companies sector. They have posted a drop of 14.22% over that time against a fall of 33.11% in the FTSE SmallCap (EX IT) TR index.
In the last quarter of 2009, the River and Mercantile UK Equity Smaller Companies fund fell 0.67% versus a fall of 7.71% for the index.
The managers feel equities are currently not expensive. Recent activity in the portfolio includes the purchase of ‘high quality media companies’ Aegis and United Business Media, IMI (engineering solutions) and International Personal Finance (home credit).
Two strongly recovering mining stocks, Petropavlovsk and Aquarius Platinum, were sold along with Cohort, a company in the security sector, which has underperformed. Consumer stocks William Hill and HMV were also sold during the last quarter of 2009.
During last year the fund rose 43.23% against a rise of 57.67% for its benchmark.