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Martin Currie unleashes best ideas GEM fund

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Martin Currie’s global emerging markets Sicav invests in a portfolio of 40 to 60 equities of emerging market companies of all sizes that represent the investment team’s best ideas.

Martin Currie head of global emerging markets Kim Catechis and co-managers Alastair Reynolds and Divya Mathur, who all joined Martin Currie in 2010, manage the fund. They will select stocks without country and sector benchmark constraints, but the fund does have a benchmark, the MSCI Emerging Markets index.

Catechis, who previously worked at Swip, believes that despite the difficulties faced by the global economy, the long-term investment case for emerging-market equities remains intact, with a vast number of investment opportunities.

He concedes that the market has recently become more bearish, as countries such as China, Brazil and India face an ongoing battle to balance growth, inflation and the availability of credit. But he says there has been little change in the bottom up factors among individual companies, so the team will visit many companies to unearth the best stocks.

Emerging market equities underperformed last year and are not immune from problems that affect the global economy such as the European sovereign debt issue. These problems have led investors to move away from risk assets such as equities out of fear and emerging market growth is expected to slow.

The current weakness in the global equity markets may provide an attractive entry point to global emerging markets, as the bad news is already being priced in and food news coming out of Europe could lead to a market rally. But this cannot be taken for granted and continuing global uncertainty could mean investors face another difficult period within the longer-term upward trend for emerging markets.

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