A tumultuous June may have taken the edge off many of the sizeable gains made by funds in the first half of 2013, but it was not enough to derail performance completely.
Figures from Morningstar analysing the performance of 2,439 UK-registered funds in its investment universe show the average fund gained a healthy 7.2% in H1. But, as ever, the biggest winners and losers exhibited a much wider range of returns.
The 20 top funds
Topping the pile of best performing funds were two Japanese equity offerings. Investors' approval of the country's 'Abenomics' stimulus programme may have moderated after equities shed 20% from their late-May peaks, but the Nikkei remains up over 30% year-to-date.
Legg Mason's Japan equity fund, renowned for its high beta plays, topped the list of UK-registered funds with a 53% gain, having been up as much as 73% by mid-May.
That was followed by Invesco Perpetual's Smaller Companies offering, but it was not just Japanese portfolios that flourished in H1.
Another top performer that catches the eye is the Guinness Alternative Energy fund, which returned 41% over the past six months. The mainstream energy and resources sectors remains out of favour, but the Guinness portfolio's focus on renewables has served it well since the start of the year.
Elsewhere, biotechnology had another strong start to the year, with AXA Framlington and Polar Capital the two fund houses to have best exploited this trend.
|Top 20||Return (%)||Rank||Manager|
|Legg Mason Japan Equity A||53.75||1||Hideo Shiozumi|
|IP Japanese Smaller Companies||43.06||2||Osamu Tokuno|
|Guinness Alternative Energy C||41.09||3||Edward Guinness|
|Legg Mason Capital Mgmt Opp A Inc (A) $||39.8||4||Samantha McLemore|
|AXA Framlington Biotech R Acc||35.8||5||Linden Thomson|
|FF&P US Small Cap Equity B Inc||33.75||6||Team|
|Baillie Gifford Japan Small Co A||33.65||7||John MacDougall|
|Baillie Gifford Japanese A||33.5||8||Sarah Whitley, Matthew Brett|
|Old Mutual Japanese Equity Acc||31.97||9||Ian Heslop & Team|
|CF Ruffer Japanese O||31.54||10||Kentaro Nishida|
|BGF Japan Small & MidCap Opps A4RF GBP||31.12||11||Kei Fujibe|
|Polar Capital Healthcare Opps R USD||31.08||12||Gareth Powell, Dan Mahony|
|Baillie Gifford Global Discovery A Acc||31.01||13||Douglas Brodie|
|Pictet Biotech-P dy GBP||30.38||14||Michael Sjostrom|
|JPM Japan A Acc||30.01||15||Shoichi Mizusawa,Nicholas Weindling,Naohiro Ozawa|
|GLG Japan CoreAlpha Retail Acc||29.8||16||Stephen Harker|
|JPM US Smaller Companies A Acc||29.19||17||Eytan Shapiro,Chris Jones|
|AXA Framlington Japan R Inc||29.03||18||Chisako Hardie|
|Fidelity Instl Japan||28.69||19||Yoshimi Hashimoto|
|BGF Japan Value A4RF GBP||28.27||20||Rob Weatherston|
Out of favour - the 20 worst funds so far this year
Last month saw few asset classes escape unscathed, and for those sectors already out of favour it was a case of going from bad to worse.
The price of gold, for example, saw steep losses amid concerns over a winding down of quantitative easing in the US.
With the precious metal suffering its worst quarter since 1920, it is no surprise to find seven precious metal portfolios occupying the bottom spaces of the UK fund universe in H1.
Having struggled throughout 2012, resources funds have seen no respite so far this year, with high profile plays including JPM Natural Resources and the BlackRock BGF World Mining fund among the biggest losers.
And though it was China that bore the brunt of investors' emerging market worries towards the end of H1, India and Brazil suffered more notably over the six-month period as a whole as BRIC funds fell firmly out of favour.
|Bottom 20||Return (%)||Rank||Manager|
|HSBC GIF Indian Equity A Inc||-13.47||2420||Sanjiv Duggal|
|HSBC Capital Protected 10 Retl||-13.8||2421||N/A|
|HSBC GIF Brazil Equity A Inc||-13.88||2422||Natalia Kerkis|
|Jupiter India||-15.32||2423||Avinash Vazirani|
|Hexam Global Em Mkt A||-15.6||2424||Bryan Collings|
|Templeton Global Emerging Markets A Acc||-15.97||2425||Mark Mobius|
|SF t1ps Smaller Companies Growth A||-16.46||2426||Peter Webb|
|First State Global Resources A Acc||-19.04||2427||Joanne Warner|
|S&W ILEX Trust Acc||-19.57||2428||Team|
|Thesis Australian Natural Res GBP Inc||-24.63||2429||Myles Campion|
|JPM Natural Resources A Acc||-26.67||2430||Neil Gregson|
|JPM Global Mining A Net Acc||-29.36||2431||Neil Gregson|
|BGF World Mining A4RF GBP||-30.5||2432||Evy Hambro, Catherine Raw|
|Investec Global Gold A Acc Net GBP||-40.56||2433||Daniel Sacks, Bradley George|
|Smith & Williamson Glbl Gold & Resources||-42.26||2434||Robert Lyon, Ani Markova|
|BlackRock Gold and General A Inc||-43.31||2435||Evy Hambro|
|SF t1ps Smaller Companies Gold A||-45.67||2436||Peter Webb|
|WAY Charteris Gold Portfolio I Acc||-49.79||2437||Ian Williams|
|CF Ruffer Baker Steel Gold O||-56.16||2438||David Baker, Trevor Steel|
|Junior Gold C||-59.03||2439||Angelos Damaskos|
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