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Multi-managers split over meeting fund individuals

Multi-manager round table

Meeting individual fund managers is a waste of time because of the difficulty in gauging other people, according to New Star head of investment fund of funds Mark Harris.

He told a Money Marketing multi-manager round table that he will only visit fund managers for a specific reason and cited research from James Montier at Dresdner Kleinwort which claimed that visits add little value.

Harris said: “We do not do many visits. People are far too confident of their ability to assess people when they meet them.Visits to management are often a waste of time because you are fooling yourself if you think that you can spot a liar.”

But Gartmore fund of funds manager Marcus Brookes said his team carried out 542 company visits last year. He said: “The only way for us to understand what is going on properly is to meet the managers.”

Jupiter director of multi-manager John Chatfeild-Roberts said he carried out 80 meetings last year while Credit Suisse multi-manager co-head Gary Potter said that with the better research tools available today, fewer visits were needed now.

More multi-manager round table reports, p12-13

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