JPM soft-closes star manager’s equity fund

By on

JP Morgan has soft-closed the Luxembourg-domiciled version of its ASEAN equity strategy run by Citywire A-rated manager Pauline Ng (pictured) Citywire Global can reveal.

The attempt to stem flows into the JPMorgan ASEAN Equity fund were first put in place at the start of June, with inflows rising to $1.2 billion by the end of July 2013.

According to a document seen by Citywire, this figure has since fallen back to $1.04 billion as JP Morgan seeks to impose predetermined capacity limits on the fund.

The Luxembourg-domiciled version of the fund is one of four versions of the same fund run through different domiciliations by JPM. The strategy as a whole has $3.6 billion in assets under management.

Singapore-based Ng is supported on the strategy by Sarinee Sernsukskul and Changqi Ong. Previous managers on the strategy include Jenny Tan, Joshua Tay and Charlotte Yew.

It is understood the decision to impose the soft-closure mechanism on the fund was designed to protect the capital of existing investors following a period of rapid inflows into the Luxembourg-domiciled version of the fund. 

A spokesperson for JP Morgan told Citywire Global: 'As part of our ongoing commitment to existing investors as a fiduciary, we are constantly looking at capacity management best practices.'

'That effort is separate from our recently completed European fund review, which was conducted with the aim of simplifying and improving the offering, ensuring that shareholders have access to a broadly diversified and innovative product range.'

The latter comment relates to the announcement last week that JP Morgan intends to merge away 17 of its current funds, which adds to its decision to liquidate or merge eight funds earlier this year.

The JPMorgan ASEAN Equity A Acc USD fund has returned 49.51% in US dollar terms over the three years to the end of July 2013. This compares to a 36% rise by its Citywire benchmark, the MSCI South East Asia TR USD, over the same period.