Mark Barnett: Why I’ll manage Woodford’s outflows ‘anonymously’

Invesco Perpetual fund manager Mark Barnett is already planning on how he will manage outflows from the £13.6bn Invesco Perpetual High Income and £9.4bn Invesco Perpetual Income funds he will take over from Neil Woodford in April.

The funds have already suffered significant outflows since Woodford’s departure was announced in October 2013.

According to FE Analytics, the Invesco Perpetual Income fund has seen outflows of £1.6bn in the past six months while the Invesco Perpetual High Income fund has lost £937m over the same period. 

Barnett says: “My stance will be to try to effect the changes and fund redemptions in a way which is as anonymous as possible. I do not want to make changes in a way that the market will see it coming. I have plans and thoughts about what I want to do.”

Barnett, who takes a long-term approach to investing, is confident his style with fit Woodford’s mandates. However, when asked about how he feels about managing such a large amount of money, Barnett admits it will be a new experience.

The manager says:  “The transition is progressing well. Frankly things are just fine.

“My approach and style lends itself to large sums of money. I have not done it before so I do not know.

“Ask me the same question in a year’s time and I will be able to answer it.”

Barnett has already assumed control of the £1.1.bn Edinburgh investment trust, previously managed by Woodford as well.

“The Edinburgh trust is going to fit into my stable of portfolios. The approach in my other funds will be reflected in this,” he says.

“People must understand the portfolio I have been managing is not drastically different from what Neil has managed. 

“I see a lot of stocks owned I will continue to own. You will not see a wholesale turnover.”

In regards to the £398m Invesco Perpetual UK Strategic Income fund, Barnett insists no changes will be made to this fund as he takes over the other, larger funds.

Barnett says: “There will be no changes. I have managed it for eight years and it is in the shape I want it to be in.”