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The Raging Bull Awards: Is it worth the hype?

By Staff Writer
The Raging Bull Awards has been dubbed the 'Oscar night of South African Unit trusts'. However, winning the award does not always mean that the winning unit trust will be a top favourite among financial planners.
 
According to Paul Roelofse, a certified financial planner, winning an award for past work, does not mean the winner will be able to maintain the standard in the future.
 
"One would have to be very balanced in the assessment of any fund, whether it has a Raging Bull or not. Obviously having a Raging Bull does give it credibility, but there is one point which stands in every financial planner's mind is that past performance is not necessarily and indication for future performance," he explained.
 
Roelofse acknowledged that the awards are prestigous, but a financial planner should always do their 'homework' when it comes to any financial product.
 
"So when [someone] stands up on the podium and receives their grandiose prize, we [financial planners] take it in. They have obviously achieved something to deserve that status, but it doesn't automatically justify you with going with that particular fund," said Roelofse.
 
The 19th annual Raging Bull awards were held on Wednesday, 28 January. These awards recognise "the stars of the unit trust industry in terms of top outright performers, best risk-adjusted performers, and best unit trust management companies".
 
Winners
 
This year, the Sanlam Investment Management (SIM) Enhanced Yield Fund came out on top. The fund won the prize for the top interest bearing short term fund.
 
This fund was launched four years ago to fit into the niche of that gives more return than a money market fund, but still has capital stability.
 
However, the SIM fund is a little more risky than money market funds.
 
"I avoid undue concentration risk, but do take on somewhat more credit and curve risk than a cash investment, which means negative monthly returns are possible," said Chris Hammah, the portfolio manager.
 
Harvard House
 
The Harvard House group, which was established in 1972, won three Raging Bull awards.
 
The BCI flexible income fund won a certificate as the Best South African Multi-Asset Bearing Fund.
 
The institution's BCI General Equity Fund also won the coveted Raging Bull as the Best South African Equity General Fund.
 
The funds were both awarded in the Top Outright Performer category for the three-year period to December 2014.
 
"The two funds which Harvard House manage have been consistent performers since their launch in October 2006 with the group currently holding just under R4,5 billion in assets under management," said a Harvard House press statement.
 
"The past three years in the market have not been easy and to be recognised as a top performer indicates we have done the basics right and have rewarded the investors who placed their faith and confidence in our abilities. Essentially, these awards reflect how our philosophy works on the bigger stage and that smaller, independent financial houses are equal to the task," said Michael Porter, Harvard House's chief investment officer.
 
There were dozens of other winners of the awards. Justmoney was given the comprehensive lists, which can be found by clicking here.

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