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Biggest and best: performance and inflows leaders in US equities

Citywire Switzerland examines the best-performing funds and those attracting the most biggest in the US equities sector.

Many investors are eyeing US equities as we enter the first stages of 2017.

While many question marks still hang in the air in the anticipation of a Trump government, prospects for US growth look promising.

In light of this, Citywire Switzerland takes a closer look at the equity market’s top-performing funds and those attracting the biggest inflows.

Here, we check in with the top-performing US equity funds based on their performance over three years to end of November 2016.

There are currently 185 managers operating US equity funds with a three-year track record over that time period.

The average manager returned 32.25%, compared to the most widely held benchmark, the S&P 500‘s performance of 47.47% over the same period.

Here’s a rundown of the top players on the US equity scene.

3. AB FCP I-American Growth Portfolio

Managed by: Frank Caruso

Total return: 48.09%

Outperforming many of its peers in the US equity department, the AB fund has the third best performance figures over the three years.

Launched in 1997, the fund had a total of $1.002 billion by the end of November.

The largest weighting in the portfolio goes to the technology sector, which represents 35.53% of the fund’s total exposure.

The healthcare sector is the second largest as it makes up 23.81% of the fund.

2. Edgewood L Select - US Select Growth

Managed by: Alexander Farman-Farmaian

Total return: 48.22%

Close on the tail of first place is the Edgewood fund, managed by Duff & Phelps Management Company and domiciled in Luxembourg.

A concentrated fund, the Edgewood fund has 22 holdings with a bias towards financials, representing 18.22% of the portfolio.

This is while the internet sector makes up 14.37% of the fund’s total weightings and consumer discretionary 11.05%.

1. Legg Mason ClearBridge US Large Cap Growth

Managed by: Margaret Vitrano, Peter Bourbeau

Total return: 51.38%

Topping the leader board for the best-performing fund in the US equity arena is the Legg Mason fund, which is run by a pair of Citywire AA-rated managers. It is $376 million in size.

Launched in 1999, the fund has 48 holdings, nearly a third of which are in the information technology sector.

This is made up with the three largest holdings, including Alphabet, and Microsoft forming over 12% of the portfolio.

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Following the flows

Despite the growing bull market forming in the US equities space, the six months leading up to November 2016 saw estimated net outflows of £6.162 billion.

Even so, there are many funds that are successfully capitalising on the current trend.

Here’s a closer look at the funds that attracted the most inflows over the six months leading to the end of November 2016.

3. JPM US Equity All Cap fund

Estimated net flows: + USD 138.84 million

Total return: 36.23%

Managed by: Jonathan Simon, Timothy Parton

A large share of flows into US equities went into the JP Morgan US Equity All Cap fund, which has been running since February 2014.

As of end of November, the fund had $961.6 million in assets and is overweight the benchmark, S&P 500 Index, in the financials sector by 4.7%, as its exposure to the sector makes up 19.3%.

This is while it is underweight consumer staples by 5.5% with a total portfolio weighting of 3.8%.

2. Loomis Sayles U.S. Growth Equity Fund

Estimated net flows: + USD 168,191 million

Managed by: Aziz Hamzaogullari

Boasting the second largest inflows in the sector is the newcomer, Loomis Sayles fund, launched just half a year ago in June 2016.

The Natixis fund had a size of $173.16 million as of November 2016, over 43% of which is invested in the information technology sector, more than double the benchmark weighting.

The fund has 43 holdings, the largest of which include, Facebook and Cisco Systems.

1. Schroder ISF US Large Cap fund

Estimated net flows: + USD 584,08 million

Total return: 38.62%

Managed by: Matthew Ward , Alan Straus

Attracting the most investments over the last six months on the US equities scene is the long-running Schroders fund, launched in 1993.

The $1.82 million fund has 68 holdings, the majority of which are in the information technology sector, which represents 23.8% of the portfolio.

The largest underweight compared to the fund’s benchmark, Standard & Poors 500 Net TR Lagged, is in industrials, which it holds at 7.9% as opposed to 10.5%.

Despite having the largest inflows, the fund ranks at 44 out of 185 funds in the peer group over three years and the duo has been managing the fund together since 2009.

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