The investment trust market is complicated but can be very profitable. The best answer is to invest in an actively managed fund of investment trusts managed by a top performing manager which also invests in international trusts.
The one I like best is the Iimia accelerated fund managed by Nick Greenwood, who formerly ran a similar fund at Christows. It was ranked first in the offshore global equity sector for the period he ran the fund from 1997-2002.
His new fund has just reached its first anniversary at the top of the active managed sector, having risen by over 51 per cent. It beat some other good trusts such as New Star global growth portfolio by around 7 per cent and Investec managed growth and Jupiter Merlin growth by over 15 per cent.
Greenwood has performed particularly well recently and has taken some good profits on Gartmore Asian Pacific, Invesco Japan discovery, Artemis alpha and the Establishment trust.
Some of his bigger holdings include Edinburgh worldwide trust and his remaining holdings in Gartmore Asia Pacific, Gartmore Irish growth and Montanaro UK smaller companies.
Greenwood also has a holding in Real Estate Opportunities ZDP, which is a UK and Irish property split-capital trust. He has also made good profits by investing in good-value zeros. This fund is a UK-based Oeic and eligible for Isas and Pep transfers.
Discounts on investment trusts are beginning to narrow so I expect this fund to appear among the top performers over both the shorter and medium terms. Because the portfolio is so widely spread, I believe it is a safer investment than most other equity funds.