fund

Rated

This is one of our rated funds. They’re the ones our experts believe will do well for investors over the longer term. Top of the class!

AXA Framlington UK Mid Cap Z

At least 70% invested in FTSE 250 companies. Up to 15% can be invested in FTSE 100 stocks, the balance in UK smaller companies.

  • 266.50p
    Price (Inc)

    These are the shares in the fund that pay out an income to clients. The income is made up of the total dividends – the money a company can pay out to its investors – from the companies in the fund.

  • 302.60p
    Price (Acc)

    These are the shares in the fund that don’t pay out an income to clients. Any dividends – the money a company can pay out to its investors – are reinvested into companies in the fund. Despite no income, the shares should be worth more over time. Good incentive, eh?

  • 0.00%

    Initial charge

    Some funds charge you when you first invest, which is aptly known as the initial charge. They’re usually between 3-5% but at Bestinvest, we usually don’t charge you a penny!

  • 0.75%
    Annual management charge

    This is how much the fund management company charges to run the fund. It’s like paying a babysitter, dog sitter or house sitter (that makes well-informed, heavily researched changes to improve your baby/dog/house when needed).

  • 0.84%
    Ongoing charges

    This stands for Ongoing Charges Figure. It’s the cost of running a fund and includes admin fees, manager fees, administration costs, etc.

  • 1.40%
    Yield

    How much the fund is currently paying out in income to investors. It’s NOT to be confused with the overall growth of a fund – a very different thing indeed. It’s also NOT a guarantee of future pay-outs, just a snapshot. This is more what it’s not than what it is…

Prices as at 23 January 2020, fund data last updated 30 December 2015

The fund targets capital growth through investment principally in FTSE 250 listed companies. Exposure to the FTSE 250 will be at least 70%. Up to 15% can be invested in FTSE 100 stocks, the balance can be invested across UK smaller companies. The manager summarises his investment style as 'growth at a reasonable price'. Portfolio construction is a combination of sector thematics and bottom up stock selection of managerially and financially robust companies, capable of dealing with this more dynamic part of the stock market.

Fund summary

Sector UK All Companies
Structure UNIT TRUST
Launched March, 2011
Size £372m
Yield 1.40%
Charging basis Income
Dividends paid 31 May, 30 Nov

Charges

Standard initial charge 0.00%
Initial charge via Bestinvest 0.00%
Additional bid/offer spread 0.00%
Annual management charge 0.75%
Ongoing charges figure 0.84%

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Investment process

Portfolio construction begins with a top down analysis of sectors / themes, followed by bottom up company fundamental and valuation analysis, with the aim of building a portfolio of between 60-80 stocks. Smaller sized positions will generally relate to smaller company holdings. Where smaller companies are held these are usually potential FTSE 250 candidates, whilst FTSE 100 stocks will generally be companies recently promoted from the FTSE 250 index. The manager prefers to focus on quality companies, invariably with lower debt levels and tends to avoid the often over-valued IPO market. These in turn should be benefiting from economic tailwinds, positive earning surprises and/or management change. Company valuation is analysed from a relative as a well as an absolute mindset with a focus on free cash flow, return on capital combined with earnings yield and growth. Portfolio beta will usually be less than its FTSE 250 ex IT benchmark and in line with the FTSE All-Share index. Whilst there are no formal sector constraints the manager will always seek to ensure the portfolio is diversified by sector.

Manager Chris St John now has an extensive track record of strong performance on this fund and prior to that on AXA's small cap fund. Despite this, this is still a relatively small fund with the flexibility to capture the manager's most compelling investment ideas across medium sized UK listed companies. The fund has an approximate 30% overlap by Net Asset Value with Nigel Thomas’s AXA Framlington UK Select Opportunities fund. More recently the portfolio has seen higher valuations across its holdings, suggesting closer alignment to a Quality-Growth investment style over GARP.

Manager research

Average monthly relative returns

  • 15/16 0.00%
  • 16/17 -0.50%
  • 17/18 0.24%
  • 18/19 1.37%
  • 19/20 0.51%

Bestinvest MRI

  • 3 years 0.71%
  • 5 years 0.00%
  • Career 0.39%
  • 3 years 50.00%
  • 5 years 0.00%
  • Career 94.30%

Performance figures are based on the average of monthly percentage returns relative to the benchmark index.

Chris St John

St John graduated from Durham University in 1995 with an honours degree in Philosophy and Psychology. He qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 1998. He joined PriceWaterhouseCoopers as part of the the London Middle Market Business Advisory Service. After a short period in Corporate and International Tax he moved to the Corporate Finance department. In 1999, he moved to ISIS Plc (which later became Foreign & Colonial) where he progressed from equity analyst to lead fund manager on four institutional FTSE Small Cap funds. In 2003 he was promoted to lead manager of the UK Small Cap retail funds. St John joined AXA Framlington in January 2005 in a support role for both Roger Whiteoak and Brian Watson on the UK smaller companies investment team before becoming a fund manager in 2008.

Track record

Chris St John has 5.4 years experience of managing mutual funds in this sector. Over this period the average monthly return relative to the benchmark index has been +0.39%. During the worst period of relative performance (from June 2008 - August 2009) there was a decline of 18% relative to the index. The worst absolute loss has been 47%. Statistically, we estimate the probability that this fund manager is adding value, rather than being lucky, is 94%.

Periods of worst performance

Absolute -47.00% (May 2008 - February 2009)
Relative -18.00% (June 2008 - August 2009)

About the MRI

Our unique indicator: the Bestinvest Manager Record Index (MRI) measures the likelihood that the fund manager is adding value through their decisions. It is based on their performance record over the course of their career, adjusted for the amount of risk taken. MRI is an important contributor to our fund rating system but it is also vital to take account of qualitative factors. It is also very important to select funds to form a cohesive portfolio with an appropriate overall risk level.

Allocation

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Top 10 holdings

Data accurate as at 29 November 2019

2.36% Wh Smith Plc
2.34% Homeserve
2.31% Marshalls
2.21% Futuren Sa
2.15% Spirent Communications
2.13% Bellway
2.12% Tp Icap Plc
2.11% Safestore Hldgs Plc
2.02% Weir Group
2.01% Grainger Plc Ord 5p
Source: Trustnet

Sector breakdown

Industrials 37.00%
Financials 19.00%
Consumer Services 17.00%
Health Care 6.00%
Consumer Goods 6.00%
Technology 5.00%
Money Market 5.00%
Oil & Gas 3.00%
Basic Materials 2.00%

Portfolio

Typically 60-80 stocks in the portfolio. Max position size 4%.

Constraints

Max 15% exposure to FTSE 100

Key Investor Information - Income

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Key Investor Information - Accumulation

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