Sarasin Investment Management has created a benchmark in absence of a suitable index
Sarasin Investment Management has created a special composite benchmark for its HealthSar Sicav as no suitable conventional index exists.
Puttner said the Sicav, details of which were exclusively revealed in Investment Week last month, would benchmark against a composite index comprising elements drawn from the MSCI World Pharmaceutical index, the MSCI World Healthcare and Equipment Services index and the MSCI Biotechnology index.
'Because of the unusual nature of the fund it was very difficult to accurately benchmark against a conventional index,' she said.
'The fund will be concentrating on three main areas, pharmaceuticals, medical technology and biotechnology, and as we intend to give equal focus to each area, we decided to create a composite index that reflected this. The index will comprise 40% pharmaceuticals, 30% healthcare, 30% biotechnology. This split also has the advantage of minimising exposure to any one sector.'
HealthSar will be managed from Basle, by Puttner and co-manager Roland Armbruster, who also runs the BluechipSar Sicav. All members of the analytical and fund management teams have worked in the industries for which they are responsible, said Puttner. She feels that this experience lends the team greater insight into sector trends and themes.
In biotechnology, she said, the stock selection procedures will place great emphasis on investing in companies that have proven markets and are not relying on the development of new products to keep them going. In healthcare and pharmaceuticals, Puttner added that the fund would look for companies that were committed to innovation and developing products that improved the quality of life for elderly people.
The portfolio will consist of between 40 and 70 stocks, of which the majority will have a market capitalisation of more than e500m. Companies with capitalisations that are below this threshold will not consist of more than 25% of the portfolio.
The current portfolio is overweight biotechnology large-caps and healthcare as the outlook for pharmaceuticals remains limited, according to Puttner.
This means that the fund is currently biased towards the US. Those stocks held in pharmaceuticals, such as Pfizer and Glaxo Smith Kline, are in the portfolio because of their defensive qualities, she said.
HealthSar, subtitled the global lifesciences and human care fund, will have a 5% initial charge and an annual management charge of 1.75%. It will be marketed exclusively through intermediaries, following receipt of FSA recognition.
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