Best and Worst Performing Investment Trusts of 2021

At the midpoint of the year, Fidelity Special Values holds the number one slot, while Japan trusts are in the doldrums

James Gard 5 July, 2021 | 4:01PM
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2021 graphic

If 2020 was the year of tech stocks then 2021 has been all about the value recovery. For the first five months of the year that trend has held, but a dramatic comeback for high growth stocks in June has upended our list of the best and worst performing investment trusts in the second quarter. At this point of 2021 we have investment trust performance data for June, Q2 and for the first half of the year. The data shows the tug-of-war between growth and value trusts, and between those focused on Asia and the United States. To illustrate the mixed nature of this year, two trusts with very contrasting styles occupy the number one and four slots in 2021 so far: value-focused Fidelity Special Values and tech growth trust Scottish Mortgage, which was last year's top performer.

Despite the ongoing threat of inflation, this year has been a relatively benign one for world stock markets, with US benchmarks hitting new record highs in recent months. So the gap between the best and worst performers is only around 30 percentage points, whereas at this point last year – a tough comparison because of the coronavirus crash – the best performer, Scottish Mortgage, was 42% higher in share price terms whereas Temple Bar Investment Trust (TMPL) was down 46%. Only two trusts have posted negative returns in the year so far and they are both focused on Japan.

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James Gard  is content editor for Morningstar.co.uk