Woodford Equity Income reaches £10bn as Income Focus fund launches

Neil Woodford

The Woodford Equity Income fund has reached £10bn in assets under management less than three years after its launch in June 2014.

The fund underperformed in 2016 but since its launch it is the top performer in the UK Equity Income sector, returning 30.3 per cent compared to the 19.2 per cent sector average, according to data from Hargreaves Lansdown.

In its latest fund update, Woodford IM said: “ February provided a more positive environment for the fund than we have seen in recent months”, adding that the fund delivered a positive return in February and outperformed its benchmark.

Today saw the launch of Woodford IM’s latest offering, the Income Focus fund, with Hargreaves Lansdown adding the fund to the Wealth 150.

Laith Khalaf, senior analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown, says: “We expect plenty of investor interest in [Woodford’s] new high yield offering, particularly in light of the fact that many income-seekers have been left high and dry by low interest rates.”

He adds: “The Woodford Equity Income fund has just exceeded £10bn in assets for the first time, less than three years since it was launched. The fund is top of its sector since launch, rising by 30 per cent, which clearly supports the fund size, however you don’t get a fund that big without earning the trust of a large number of investors.”