Liontrust inflows dip in Q4 but assets reach £3.6bn

Liontrust Asset Management saw net inflows fall by almost 22 per cent in the final quarter of 2013, although the amount of money run by group has advanced past the £3.5bn mark.

The firm’s interim management statement for the three months to 31 December show net inflows amounted to £50m, down from the £64m recorded in the same quarter of 2012.

Liontrust would have experienced a net outflow of £73m for the quarter were it not for the acquisition of John Husselbee’s North Investment Partners in October. This contributed £123m in net inflows in the fourth quarter.

The group says the outflows were the result of a £106m redemption from the Liontrust Global Strategic Bond fund by a single investor and a £39bn redemption by an institutional investor from its UK retail funds.

Net inflows for 2013 as a whole stood at £365m – some 44 per cent higher than the £253m seen in across the previous year.

Liontrust’s assets under management rose to £3.6bn by the end of 2013, representing a 6 per cent gain on the £3.4bn reported at the end of the third quarter. The firm now runs more than £2.5bn in its UK retail funds.

Liontrust chief executive John Ions says: “It is pleasing to report that we continue to grow the business and interest in Liontrust and our funds has risen still further.

“Assets under management increased a further 6 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2013 and we believe our profitability, excluding performance fee profits, in the current financial year will be in line with expectations.”

Ions adds that the firm has maintained its “excellent long-term performance”, although he notes that fund performance was not as strong on a relative basis in 2013 owing to the impact of QE boosting lower quality stocks.

Numis Securities comments: “[Funds under management] at £3.6bn was marginally lower than the £3.7bn we had forecast, mainly due to two small unexpected, albeit lower margin, institutional outflows.

“Whilst the company acknowledge that very short term investment performance has dipped in most funds, they attribute this to outperformance from lower quality stocks towards the end of 2013 (possibly driven by QE) and expect this to reverse in the future if the market re-focuses on fundamentals.”