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Argonaut adds Euro banks in high-alpha fund

Argonaut Capital Partners has introduced 10 per cent exposure to European banks in the £307.9m Ignis Argonaut European high-alpha fund over the last five weeks.

Partner Barry Norris has introduced around 3 per cent exposure to Banca Intesa, BNP Paribas and UBS, which marks the fund’s first eurozone bank exposure in four years.

Norris says: “We have been adding selectively to a few high-beta financials. In the summer, the consensus was there was no solution in sight for the eurozone crisis. We are beginning to see now the outline of a plan that might actually convince financial markets that it could work.”

In the £8.4m Ignis Argonaut European absolute return fund, Norris has added risk by closing the short on Spanish Banco Santander and trimming the short on Portuguese bank Banco Espirito Santo.

Jonathan Davis Wealth Management managing director Jonathan Davis says: “I can see the value of taking exposure to European financials as a short-term trading play but as a longer-term play it is not a good idea. Over the next six to 18 months, one or more European countries are going to default on their loans and international banks are going to take massive losses.”


Threadneedle’s Davis to take over European fund

Threadneedle fund manager Nick Davis is taking over the firm’s £583m European fund, as part of a reshuffle caused by the resignation of head of global equities Jeremy Podger. Davis currently runs the £12.3m pan-European equity dividend fund which he will continue to run. The firm announced yesterday that Podger has resigned from Threadneedle to […]


New Star and Evershed settle out of court

Patrick Evershed, former fund manager at New Star, has reached a settlement with the asset manager over claims he was bullied. Evershed had been seeking more than £1m in compensation from his former employer, claiming he was bullied by the firm’s founder John Duffield. The parties said in a statement: “New Star Asset Management holdings […]

Halfway house

Government plans for housing are welcome but will they go far enough? Paul Thomas reports


Treasury launches EU gender directive consultation

The Government has launched a consultation outlining how the European Court of Justice’s decision to ban gender pricing in insurance contract will affect the UK. The Government reiterates its view that the judgment, which will take effect from December 21, 2012, will not apply to existing contracts before that date. It is now seeking feedback […]


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