Schroder UK Equity fund undergoes revamp

Simon Brazier, the new manager of the 638m Schroder UK Equity fund, has made several changes to the portfolio since assuming responsibility for it at the start of May.

Brazier, who joined Schroders eight years ago, took over the fund from Christopher Metcalfe, who resigned from the group.

Since then, Brazier says he has raised its tracking error from 1.8% to about 3%, and increased the number of stocks in the portfolio from 59 to 95. The target number of holdings has increased to between 80 and 120.

“Before I took over the fund it was run very much along index lines, with the portfolio not taking enough risk to achieve a decent level of outperformance of the index,” Brazier says. “I take more of an absolute view on stocks, with the largest weighting of any stock in the portfolio now being restricted to 5%.”

Brazier, who has worked in the specialist team with Richard Buxton and Tom Carroll since 2002, says the fund is now structured to reflect the best ideas of the group’s UK equities team. He says that by having more stocks in the portfolio, he can invest in more of the companies liked by the team that were previously excluded.

“The aim of the fund is to be broadly diversified in terms of stocks, sectors and capitalisation, reflecting the best ideas of the team,” he says. “However, while I am well aware of sector and cap weightings, the fund is not driven by them. It is all about bottom-up stockpicking.”