Fund of the week: Axa’s ready-made portfolio

Its moniker may lack glamour, says Mark Dampier of Hargreaves Lansdown in The Independent, yet Axa Framlington Managed Balanced is “the type of fund most investors should own”. This is because it includes equities, bonds and cash, making it a “ready-made portfolio”.

The strategy behind the fund, launched in 1992, is to seek capital growth by investing 80% in shares and the rest in cash and bonds. It can buy securities in any worldwide economic sector that manager Richard Peirson believes shows above average profitability. So far this approach is paying off.

According to, the fund delivered a return of 13.3% over one year, 26.5% over three years and 28.6% over five years. Its annual charge, meanwhile, is a reasonable 1.25%. By striking a balance between bonds, cash and equities Peirson also reduces volatility.

A high equity weighting means that “if the good times return then he will be there to take advantage”, says Frank Talbot on, while the bond and cash position “provides insurance against the situation getting worse”.

The secret of the veteran fund manager’s success is favouring FTSE 250 companies. These, notes Dampier, have largely beaten the FTSE 100 in the last ten years. Around 48% of his holdings are British stocks, with about 40% international shares, selected by other specialist Axa Framlington managers.

Despite Britain’s economic gloom, Peirson remains optimistic about the opportunities in the FTSE 250. For investors seeking diversification, Axa Framlington Managed Balanced offers “an aggressively positioned mixed asset fund” that’s well worth a look, says Talbot.

Contact: 0845-777 5511.

Axa Framlington managed balanced fund

Axa Managed Balanced top ten holdings

Name of holding % of assets
Axa Fram. Emerging Markets 3.0
Treasury 5% gilt 2025 2.6
Germany 0.75% BDS 13/09/13 2.4
HSBC Holdings 2.2
Royal Dutch Shell 2.1
Treasury 2 1/2% IDX-linked gilt 2.0
GlaxoSmithKline 1.6
Vodafone 1.4
BP 1.4
Diageo 1.4

MoneyWeek magazine

Latest issue:

Magazine cover
Party's over for Putin

The only portfolio safe from Russia's rout

The UK's best-selling financial magazine. Take a FREE trial today.
Claim 4 FREE Issues

Hedge fund manager Hugh Hendry: 'It felt like the sun rose only to humiliate me'

In a series of three short videos, Merryn Somerset-Webb talks to Hugh Hendry, manager of the Eclectica hedge fund, about everything from China to the US, Europe, and Japan.

Which investment platform?

When it comes to buying shares and funds, there are several investment platforms and brokers to choose from. They all offer various fee structures to suit individual investing habits.
Find out which one is best for you.

18 December 1912: Piltdown Man – the 'missing link'

One of the world's greatest scientific hoaxes took place today in 1912, with the presentation of human evolution's missing link to the Geological Society in London.