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First State shuffles co-managers on four funds

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First State has made a raft of changes to the managers on its emerging market funds, which has seen Tom Prew replace Glen Finegan on the £4.4bn First State Global Emerging Markets Leaders fund.

Prew will co-manage the fund with Jonathan Asante, who he has worked with since 2011 on the Ireland-domiciled $73m (£46m) First State Global Emerging Markets Select fund.

First State soft-closed its Global Emerging Market Leaders fund in September due to size concerns, after announcing the move in May.

Finegan will work with Asante on his new remit of co-managing the £35m First State Worldwide Equity fund.

In a separate fund manager move, Nick Edgerton is now working on the £71m First State Worldwide Sustainability fund with David Gait as co-manager.

Gait has become co-manager of the £861m First State Asia Pacific fund.

All manager changes were completed as of the end of July 2013. The lead managers on all four portfolios have not been changed.

Hargreaves Lansdown head of financial planning Danny Cox says: “With all these changes, you need to look at it in the context that the lead manager is still there.”

The JHC Partnership director Keith Iles says: “I wonder why First State has made these changes because the performance looks good.

“Surely, with so many changes, First State needs to provide a bit more of explanation as to the rationale behind these changes.”

First State declined to give a reason for the changes. 

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