Twitch fears see fund companies shunning sterling

Old Mutual Asset Management and MAM Funds managers are moving away from sterling to overseas currencies due to UK debt concerns.

Omam head of fixed income Stewart Cowley, who runs the £491m global strategic bond fund, says half the portfolio is now outside sterling with exposure to commodities, currencies and the euro. He says: “Sterling is an at-risk currency. Last year, 85 per cent of the fund was in sterling and we have reduced that. I fear the markets will lose confidence in the pound and our ability to reduce debt. My concern is it will take just a twitch in perception to send the pound down in parity against the euro, making it the dollar of Europe.”

MAM Funds portfolio manager Martin Gray, who manages the £189m Miton strategic bond and £619m Miton special sits funds, has moved 10 per cent of sterling assets into Asian assets across both portfolios.