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Julian Gibbs

Cautious investors, trustees and the elderly are always looking for cautiously managed funds which show good returns. In my opinion, the best of these is the Ruffer income fund managed by Henry Maxey (AAA-rated by Citywire) and John Wong, with the help of Jonathan Ruffer and Steve Russell.

Ruffer has over £1bn funds under management and is privately owned by the founding shareholders and management.

This fund, which was launched in 2000, aims to provide a dependable income from a growing portfolio. The managers look to generate positive absolute returns year on year. In fact, it has shown consistent returns each year to June 30, varying between 10.5 and 16.9 per cent each discrete year, and a total return of 64 per cent since launch.

It is the top performer in the cautious managed sector over two and three years and since launch. It has also shown the second-highest returns over three years of all 119 equity global funds.

At present, it has 28 per cent invested in government bonds and 11 per cent in cash. It has a widely spread international equity portfolio with 25 per cent in UK equities, 10 per cent each in Canadian and US equities, 5 per cent in Japanese equities and 7 per cent in other international equities.

The fund&#39s benchmark is cash, which it aims to beat by a substantial margin. It certainly has succeeded in this aim so far.

At the moment, the managers favour Japanese equities and may well increase investment there. Otherwise, they are looking to find shares with good cashflows and low volatility.

This fund is recommended as a core investment for cautious and realistic investors and trustees.

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