However, like David toppling Goliath, in terms of equity funds Comgest, the leading small manger, has actually outperformed the top large fund group, Kepler-Fonds, according to Morningstar data.
Large manager ratings
Scope’s Asset Manager Rating Q2 2018 report found that Austrian fund manager Kepler-Fonds retained its top spot as the top ranked large manager with 64.9% of its 37 rated funds being given a top rating (A or B).
Vontobel Asset Management followed Kepler-Fonds with 52% of its funds given a top rating, and because the average proportion of the top ratings in the top 10 fell the manager rose seven places since Q1.
The report said Legg Mason made the most significant entry into the top 10, rising from 30th to third, with 50% of its funds being given a top rating.
Small manager ratings
Among the smaller managers – less than 25 and more than eight rated funds – Comgest took the top spot with 82% of its funds given a top rating.
French asset manager Comgest regained this position after falling to third during Q1 when the proportion of its top ratings was at 71%.
Wellington Management and T. Rowe Price followed Comgest, respectively, with Wellington increasing its proportion of top ratings from 70% to 78%, and T. Rowe 64% to 68% from Q1.
Lupus Alpha, Dimensional, and First State broke into the top 10 for the first time, and Skag, Meag, and J O Hambro dropped out of the top 10.
Large and small manager fund performance
Looking at the Kepler-Fonds and Comgest equity funds that were given a top rating (A or B), there were not any Kepler-Fonds equity funds that received an A rating, however, seven of Comgest equity funds did.
Using Morningstar data, Expert Investor, found that all but three of the top rated Comgest funds had outperformed the Kepler-Fonds funds over the three years to 31 August 2018.
Comgest Growth Europe Opportunities EUR Accumulation fund returned the highest over the three years to 31 August 2018 at 17.6%.
This was followed by Comgest Growth Europe Smaller Companies EUR Accumulation at 17.3% and Comgest Growth Japan JPY Accumulation at 16%.
According the fund factsheet, the Comgest Growth Europe Opportunities EUR Accumulation fund has its highest sector weighting towards health care (31.3%), information technology (26.3%), and industrials (14.1%).
The fund’s largest country weightings were towards Germany (19.7%), France (15.2%), and Denmark (14.5%).
Kepler-Fonds’ top performing equity fund over the same time period was the Kepler Value Aktienfonds T at 9.2%, followed by Kepler Global Aktienfonds A at 8.3% and Kepler Growth Aktienfonds T at 8.1%.
According to Morningstar, the fund’s largest sector weighting is towards consumer cyclical (20.1%), financial services (16.7%), and technology (15.1%).
Its highest country weightings were towards North America at 41%, emerging markets at 21.5% and Japan at 17.1%.