For financial professionals in the UK

Fund Manager November 2021 Commentary – The City of London Investment Trust plc

Job Curtis, ASIP

Job Curtis, ASIP

Portfolio Manager

16 Dec 2021
3 minute read

During November, the UK equity market produced a negative total return of 2.2%, as measured by the FTSE All Share Index1. The rise in Covid-19 cases in Europe and the emergence of the Omicron variant in South Africa weighed on market sentiment. With travel restrictions in prospect, the travel and leisure sector were notably weak. Defensive sectors outperformed, led by telecommunications services and utilities.

A complete sale was made from City of London’s portfolio of Daily Mail and General Trust, which is subject to a takeover bid from the Rothermere family. One-third of the value of the bid is in shares in Cazoo, an online used car dealer, which appeared to us to be vastly overvalued on conventional metrics. An addition was made to City of London’s shareholding in Ibstock, the leading UK brick manufacturer, which should benefit from the robust outlook for housebuilding.

UK GDP growth for 2021 is expected to be above 6%, which would be a record year in the post second world war era. It follows the sharp fall in GDP in 2020 when the pandemic and lockdowns started. While the emergence of a new Covid-19 variant is disappointing, it would appear that society is better able to adapt to the new conditions, especially with the roll out of the vaccination programme. Monetary policy, with rock bottom interest rates, remains stimulatory which should be supportive of dividend paying equities.


1 FTSE All-Share Index, as at 16/12/2021

These are the views of the author at the time of publication and may differ from the views of other individuals/teams at Janus Henderson Investors. References made to individual securities do not constitute a recommendation to buy, sell or hold any security, investment strategy or market sector, and should not be assumed to be profitable. Janus Henderson Investors, its affiliated advisor, or its employees, may have a position in the securities mentioned.


Past performance does not predict future returns. The value of an investment and the income from it can fall as well as rise and you may not get back the amount originally invested.


The information in this article does not qualify as an investment recommendation.


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Please read the following important information regarding funds related to this article.

Before investing in an investment trust referred to in this document, you should satisfy yourself as to its suitability and the risks involved, you may wish to consult a financial adviser. This is a marketing communication. Please refer to the AIFMD Disclosure document and Annual Report of the AIF before making any final investment decisions.
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  • This Company is suitable to be used as one component of several within a diversified investment portfolio. Investors should consider carefully the proportion of their portfolio invested in this Company.
  • Active management techniques that have worked well in normal market conditions could prove ineffective or negative for performance at other times.
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  • Shares can lose value rapidly, and typically involve higher risks than bonds or money market instruments. The value of your investment may fall as a result.
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