Platform investment trust sales rise 55%

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Sales of investment trusts on platforms rose by 55 per cent in the first three quarters of 2015, compared to the same period a year earlier.

Data from the Association of Investment Companies found that sales of investment trusts rose to £549m, up on the same period in 2014 when sales were £355.2m.

Sales for Q3 last year were £146m, marking the second highest quarter on record and up 26 per cent on the same quarter a year earlier.

Q3 last year was second only to Q2 2015 for the highest investment trust sales, which was when Neil Woodford launched his Patient Capital trust.

AIC chief executive Ian Sayers says: “It’s very positive to see such strong adviser demand for investment companies in the first nine months of 2015 with purchases significantly up on 2014 and an impressive 241 per cent higher than pre-RDR levels.”

Data from AIC shows the Global sector was most popular in Q3 2015, accounting for 19 per cent of purchases, while UK equity income was second at 14 per cent.

JP Morgan Asset Management head of investment trust sales Tim Mitchell says he expects demand for investment trusts to continue to rise as more investors seek alternative asset classes in the current market volatility.

He says: “Investment companies have come into their own due to their closed-end structure in terms of investing in alternative assets, given the often illiquid characteristics of these assets.

“The majority of recent investment company launches have been in this sector as alternative assets tend to exhibit low correlation to equity and bond markets and can often distribute returns in the form of attractive levels of dividend income. Volatility also tends to be materially lower than equity and bond markets.”