After a hideous year in financial markets last year, many investors might well feel angry with their financial advisers. Most, however, will restrict themselves to grumbling or perhaps the occasional courtcase.
Such mild action is not for the senior citizens of Southern Germany – a group of four unhappy investors kidnapped the financial adviser who had helped them put their money into overseas properties, losing as much as E2.4m between them.
Mark Dampier is enjoying the move by hedge funds into the retail investment market via Ucits III. The head of research at Hargreaves Lansdown was wary of absolute return funds when they first appeared. I spoke to him when BlackRock (then Merrill Lynch Investment Management) launched its Absolute Alpha fund in 2006, and he said he would wait to see if it worked before making any judgements.
Lower risk funds “have to be bang on right”, he said at the time.
Now, he is a fan, with the caveat that the absolute return sector is a mixed bag and some funds are difficult to analyse. The BlackRock fund “did what it said on the tin”, he reckons.