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Tilney Bestinvest ditches Newton Asia fund after Pidcock departure

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Tilney Bestinvest has sold out of the Newton Asian Income fund in its multi-asset portfolios following the departure of manager Jason Pidcock earlier this year.

In a reshuffle of the Asia ex-Japan and emerging market allocations in the £1bn multi-asset portfolios, Tilney Bestinvest has replaced the Newton Asian Income fund with the First State Asian Equity Plus fund in the income portfolio and with the First State Asia Pacific Leaders fund in the income and growth fund.

Chief investment officer Gareth Lewis says: “Following the departure of the long-standing lead manager of the Newton Asian Income fund, Jason Pidcock, earlier this year, we have reviewed our position in the fund.”

Pidcock announced his departure from Newton in May, leaving to join Jupiter Asset Management. Since his departure the Newton Asian Income fund’s assets have dropped from £4.4bn to £2.5bn.

Elsewhere in the emerging market and Asia allocations, Lewis has sold out of the JP Morgan Emerging Markets and Lazard Emerging Markets funds in favour of the Fidelity Emerging Markets fund, run by Nick Price, because it has a growth tilt.

The manager has also sold Angus Tulloch’s First State Asia Pacific Leaders fund in the maximum growth and aggressive growth portfolios, switching into the First State Asian Focus fund.

Lewis says: “The First State Asian Focus fund is a newly-launched fund managed by Martin Lau, a manager with a very strong track record in Asia and supported by a stable team on the ground.

“We continue to hold Angus Tulloch in high regard, and hold his First State Asia Pacific Leaders funds in other portfolios including the Income and Growth fund, but have decided the more growth-titled style of the First State Asian Focus fund is suited to the objectives of the Maximum Growth and Aggressive Growth portfolios.”

However, Lewis says the funds remain cautious of Asia ex-Japan and emerging markets and are maintaining an existing underweight to the region.

“In terms of overall positioning across the range, we remain cautious and are overweight cash and targeted absolute return funds as well as commercial property, where relevant. We have been tactically underweight equities since the summer and are underweight fixed income,” he says.

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