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John Stavis to go on six-month sabbatical from Fidelity

Fidelity fund manager John Stavis is to go on a six-month sabbatical from July 1, 2008.

Stavis has been at the firm since 1995 and runs the income plus, growth and income and equity sleeve of the Moneybuilder balanced fund for the firm.

He is set to return in January 2009 but in an alternative investment role yet to be decided by the firm.

Management of the income plus fund will now pass to Michael Clark, while growth and income and the UK equity portion of moneybuilder balanced will pass to Matt Siddle.

Having been considered as a potential replacement for Anthony Bolton on the Fidelity UK special situations at one point, Stavis has struggled for performance in recent times with his £653m income plus fund currently fourth quartile in the IMA equity income sector.

His growth and income fund is third quartile over three years in the IMA UK all-companies sector.

Clark joined Fidelity in 2003 and has over 20 years experience in investment research. Siddle joined Fidelity as an analyst in 1999 and became director of research in 2005.

Fidelity has made a number of changes to its struggling UK franchise in the past 12 months.

In addition to Sanjeev Shah replacing Anthony Bolton on its flagship UK special situations fund, the group also announced the appointments of Tom Ewing and Aruna Karunathilake on the UK growth and UK aggressive funds respectively in December 2007.

Fidelity chief executive officer Nicky Richards says: “John’s decision to take a well-earned sabbatical after 13 straight years in investment management creates the opportunity for Fidelity to assign UK retail portfolios to two more of our highly experienced research analysts in the UK equity team. The investment styles of Michael and Matt are ideally suited to their new portfolio assignments.”

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