Jupiter expands fund powers with Nurs status

Jupiter has announced plans to convert its range of Merlin fund of funds to non-Ucits retail scheme (Nurs) status as part of their conversion to the FSA’s new collective investment rulebook (Coll). Subject to unitholder approval, the four Jupiter Merlin funds all plan to extend their investment powers, allowable under the Nurs structure.

By adopting Nurs status, the Jupiter Merlin Balanced, Growth, Income and Worldwide portfolios – which are worth a collective 1.35bn in assets under management – can increase their minimum investment in any one collective investment scheme from 20% to 35%.

The funds can also invest in a wider range of asset funds, such as commercial property, offshore, hedge funds and exchange traded funds. However, John Chatfeild-Roberts, head of the Jupiter independent funds team, says that while adopting Nurs will widen its investment powers, it does not mean it will utilise them all.

Unitholders in the four funds will vote on the extension of investment powers at a meeting to be held on June 2. Circulars were sent out last week. At the end of December last year, funds of funds structured as Nurs’ were granted Isa status.

With effect from July 17, Jupiter’s remaining 24 unit trusts will all convert to Ucits III status following the adoption of Coll.

Unitholders in these funds do not need to approve the move as no material changes will be made to any of the portfolios as a result.

The Jupiter Japan Income fund, which was launched in September 2005, already operates under Coll as a Ucits III fund.