Edinburgh Investment Trust Widens Foreign Horizon

CEF TIMES: The board of Edinburgh Investment Trust is looking to increase manager Neil Woodford's quota on investing in overseas assets

Jackie Beard, FCSI, 8 June, 2011 | 2:35PM
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CEF News: June 2-8
The board of Edinburgh Investment Trust (EDIN) is recommending an increase in the permitted level of overseas investments, from 15% to 20%, and this will be put to shareholders at the AGM. If approved, this would allow manager Neil Woodford scope to broaden his remit beyond the UK in his search for returns. When we look at the current positioning of his open-ended Invesco Perpetual Income Fund, we can see that nearly 85% of that fund is invested in the UK. We wouldn’t expect the increase of 5% to make a material difference in the way the fund is run, but it would allow it to become more competitive, particularly with its open-ended peers, as they can invest up to 20% overseas as a matter of course.

Global resources specialist El Oro (ELX) has been admitted to trading on the London Stock Exchange’s quotes and crosses system. It is already listed on the Channel Islands Stock Exchange.

Indian property company Hirco (HRCO) has conditionally raised £11.1 million net in its most recent placing, although this is subject to shareholder approval at the EGM on 28 June.

Majedie Investments (MAJE) is proposing a slight modification to its investment objective regarding its aim to increase its dividend above the rate of inflation. However, the modification is very minor and, in our view, shouldn’t cause any concern to shareholders.

Matrix European Real Estate (MERE) has decided to proceed with a full disposal of its assets. The board gave notice to its investment manager in January 2011 under a three-year notice period. Launched in June 2007, the fund has traded at a hefty discount to its NAV since the end of 2008 and failed to make much headway.

At Prosperity Voskhod’s EGM (PVF) on 3 June, shareholders rejected the motion to wind the company up and realise its assets. The company will now hold a continuation vote every three years.

RENN Universal Growth (RUG) has had confirmation from HM Revenue & Customs that it will not lose its investment trust status for the year ended 31 March 2011. The company had announced an error in May that could have caused this loss of status, although no capital gain was expected as a result.

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