Eden mulls multi-strategy absolute return fund for Mark Harris

Eden Financial multi-asset fund manager Mark Harris is considering launching an absolute return multi-strategy fund and a growth fund.

Last week, Money Marketing revealed Harris was joining Eden to co-manage the £66.6m CF Eden global multi-strategy fund, alongside Chris Jaques.

Harris says the absolute return fund may work to an absolute return target but not invest in absolute return funds.

He says: “It would be hard to run such a fund but not impossible. Using some overlays, options and futures would dampen down volatility.

“Given the awful returns on equities, a multi-asset fund with a growth profile would be interesting. There are some opportunities in growth companies. Valuations are cheap and there will be a point where it is worth taking equity risk. Interest rates are low and investors are not getting much on credit.”

Harris says his focus for the CF Eden global multi-strategy fund is to take out the 8-10 per cent direct equity exposure to make the fund more attractive to retail investors.

He says: “We will only use direct equity exposure in special situations in the fund in the future. There will be no direct equity exposure in the next week or two. The funds we invest in will preserve the equity themes.”

Harris adds that the fund may move from an underweight position in European equities to a neutral position, given the current cheap valuations, particularly in Germany.