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Top five Asia Pacific equity managers of past 12 months

Top five Asia Pacific equity managers of past 12 months

Asia ex Japan equities have had an unsatisfying 2015. Slowing growth in Asian economies, coupled with weak currencies and stock market volatility, have kept investors on edge for several months.

Reflecting the glum sentiment, the FTSE World Asia Pacific ex Japan index has dropped 12.9% in the 12 months to July 2015. Nevertheless, some fund managers have managed to buck the trend and post positive returns.

Citywire Asia analysed the performance of fund managers who have funds registered for sale in Hong Kong and Singapore to find out the top five outperformers.

5/4. Mike Sell, Alquity Investment Management; Christine Seng & Soo Nam Ng, Columbia Threadneedle Investments

Funds: Alquity SICAV-Alquity Asia M USDAlquity SICAV-Alquity Asia M USD; Threadneedle (Lux)-Developed Asia Gth and Inc AU

One year total return (July 2014 - July 2015): 4%

It's a tie between three fund managers for fifth place: head of Asian investments at Alquity Investment Management, Mike Sell, and Columbia Threadneedle's Christine Seng and Soo Nam.

Sell, an industry veteran in emerging markets, has been at the helm of the Alquity SICAV Asia fund since its launch in 2014, focusing on the long-term growth of mixed cap companies in frontier markets around the Pacific.

Threadneedle's Seng and Ng, meanwhile, have been managing the Developed Asia growth fund since October 2013.

Sell's fund is registered for sale in Singapore and Hong Kong, while the Threadneedle fund is registered for sale in Singapore only. 

3. Hyung Jin Lee, Baring Asset Management

Funds: Baring Eastern Trust GBP AccBaring Eastern Trust GBP Acc; Baring Asia Growth A USD Inc

One year total return (July 2014 - July 2015): 4.3%

Coming in at number three is Citywire A rated Hyung Jin Lee,  who has been managing two Baring Asia-focused funds since 2012. Both funds have a strong focus on China - the Baring Asia Growth fund holds a 33.6% stake in Chinese equities, alongside a large sector exposure to financials (19.2%) and IT (18.3%).

In a recent interview with Citywire, he revealed why he backs tech stocks in Asia and the challenges investors need to watch out for.

The top holdings for his Asia Growth fund are the AIA group at 6.0% and Tencent with a 4.7% stake, as of July 2015. The fund is registered for sale in Singapore and Hong Kong.

(One year total return figure is an average of the two funds.)

2. Wilfred Son Keng Po, PineBridge

Fund: PineBridge Asia ex Japan Equity Class YPineBridge Asia ex Japan Equity Class Y

One year total return (July 2014 - July 2015): 4.9%

At number two is Hong Kong-based Wilfred Son Keng Po, who is a Citywire AAA-rated fund manager from the Philippines.

He has been with PineBridge Investments since 1997, working as the lead portfolio manager for the Asia ex Japan fund since 2012. As of June 2015, he was invested heavily in financials (33.1%), with a country focus on China (29%) and South Korea (17.1%).

The fund is registered for sale in Singapore and Hong Kong.

1. Emily Dong & Andrew Swan, BlackRock

Fund: BGF Asian Growth Leaders A2 USDBGF Asian Growth Leaders A2RF USD

One year total return (July 2014 - July 2015): 7.4%

Managed by two Citywire AAA-rated fund managers, the BlackRock Asia fund managers take first place for their fund's one year performance.

Emily Dong and Andrew Swan have co-managed the fund since its inception in 2012. The fund focuses on high growth sectors with above average sales and earnings, with particular exposure to China (27.8%) and South Korea (17.4%) as of April 2015.

Andrew Swan has fared particularly well in the Asia Pacific markets, managing to predict and avoid growth stagnation in China by shifting exposure away from tech and gaming companies towards energy companies.

The fund is registered for sale in Singapore and Hong Kong.

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Related Fund Managers

Mike Sell
Mike Sell
105/209 in Equity - Asia Pacific Excluding Japan (Performance over 3 years) Average Total Return: 11.90%
Christine Seng
Christine Seng
91/209 in Equity - Asia Pacific Excluding Japan (Performance over 3 years) Average Total Return: 13.74%
Soo Nam Ng
Soo Nam Ng
65/209 in Equity - Asia Pacific Excluding Japan (Performance over 3 years) Average Total Return: 17.12%
Hyung Jin Lee
Hyung Jin Lee
16/209 in Equity - Asia Pacific Excluding Japan (Performance over 3 years) Average Total Return: 27.31%
Wilfred Son Keng Po
Wilfred Son Keng Po
44/209 in Equity - Asia Pacific Excluding Japan (Performance over 3 years) Average Total Return: 19.30%
Andrew Swan
Andrew Swan
15/209 in Equity - Asia Pacific Excluding Japan (Performance over 3 years) Average Total Return: 27.59%
Emily Dong
Emily Dong
8/209 in Equity - Asia Pacific Excluding Japan (Performance over 3 years) Average Total Return: 35.96%
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