Winterthur Life has added five sector multi-manager funds to its Elite range of unit-linked funds for bond and pension products.
The funds are designed to free up IFAs' time by outsourcing fund selection to professional investment managers, allowing advisers to focus on allocating their clients' portfolios to different sectors.
Winterthur Elite UK equity, Winterthur Elite European equity, Winterthur Elite North American equity, and Winterthur Elite global equity consist of equity funds focusing on particular geographical sectors. Winterthur Elite bond differs in that it invests in another asset class.
The selection of underlying funds is carried out by Winterthur's six-strong investment panel which is assisted by a team of analysts. The investment manager, Colin Taylor, has more than 30 years' experience. He joined Winterthur three years ago and was previously an investment consultant to pension schemes.
The investment panel conduct a detailed analysis of all the funds in Winterthur's tailored selection range. This means they focus on funds Winterthur has already identified as the best of their breed.
A combination of quantitative, qualitative and technical analysis will be used to identify funds which can be blended to create a suitable portfolio of various styles.
The research will be produced in-house but will be complemented by independent research from Forsyth Partners. Forsyth Partners will assess past performance and look at factors affecting future performance. Winterthur's investment panel will use the information to assess the fund's strengths and weaknesses before including them in the final portfolio. Once selected, the underlying funds will be continuously monitored and replaced if necessary.
The multi-manage sector funds are a useful addition for investors who cannot access other multi-manager funds through Winterthur pensions and investment bonds. However, constructing portfolios from a set number of funds already monitored by the group may be seen as restrictive.