McDonald took charge of the funds two weeks ago following the departure of Harries and Wood to Scottish Widows Investment Partnership.
He will be reunited with former Gartmore colleague Marcus Brookes, who joins Cazenove as co-manager in the new year.
McDonald says he is happy with the positioning of the portfolios but will make a number of high conviction bets over the coming weeks. The portfolios will reflect McDonald and Brookes’ view on style and asset allocation, which differs from the neutral stance of the previous managers.
McDonald and Brookes will follow the same investment process they used at Gartmore but will enhance this by placing greater emphasis on the business cycle analysis that Cazenove uses for its direct equities funds.
McDonald says the analysis will be a key driver of asset allocation, fund selection and portfolio construction.
He is also wary of an Asian undertone to the investment themes of agriculture, infrastructure, energy and food.
He says: “We are mindful of the risk of constructing a portfolio while believing it is diversified across country and sector but which is too dependent on Asia. A lot of the current investment themes are supported by China and underlying drivers to the Chinese market are supporting other themes. In that environment, diversified multiasset portfolios have the potential to do well.”