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Property trusts boosted by post-Brexit gains

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Closed-ended commercial property funds saw gains in the six months following the Brexit vote amid the wave of redemptions faced by the open-ended sector.

Data compiled for Money Marketing by the Association of Investment Companies shows the average total return for the Property Direct UK sector was 17.08 per cent in the six months between the EU referendum in June and December, compared with 5.43 per cent returns for the whole of 2016.

The £1.3bn F&C Commercial Property trust was the best-performing fund in the sector after selling a London property over Christmas to reduce its exposure in the capital.

At the end of December the fund sold the office property, at 25 Great Pulteney Street, for £54.4m, reflecting a net initial yield of 3.95 per cent, according to a note from stockbroker Numis.

Central London exposure in the trust was 36 per cent before it disposed of the property.

December figures show Property Direct UK was the most popular sector for the first time, accounting for 15 per cent of advised investment trust sales via platforms between July and September, worth a total of £179.7m.

The Investment Association Property sector had more than £2bn outflows from June to November 2016 and returned 1.2 per cent over the period.

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