Invesco Perpetual’s Neil Woodford has warned that recent housing data suggests “challenging times ahead”, as market falls helped his high income fund to fall back under the £10bn under management mark.
Woodford, who favours defensive stocks in sectors like tobacco, pharmaceuticals and utilities, says heightened concerns over the Eurozone debt crisis pushed markets lower in November. This hampered his performance during the month, despite positive corporate news from his favoured stocks.
Invesco Perpetual’s flagship high income fund fell in size from £10.2bn as at October 29 to £9.9bn as at November 30. Woodford’s other fund, Invesco Income, fell from £7.9bn to £7.7bn.
He says: “Rising concerns about Eurozone sovereign debt saw investors take profits after the market’s strong recent performance. Housing market data indicated further falls in prices and challenging times ahead.
“In corporate news, Imperial Tobacco announced net income of £1.51bn for the twelve months to the end of September, up from £663m in the same period a year earlier, with the dividend increased by 15 per cent..
“Reckitt Benckiser also released upbeat numbers, with third quarter profit up 19 per cent to £426m, which was above concensus forecasts. Telecom groups Vodafone and BT also released upbeat earnings, which were ahead of market expectations.”