The Trust seeks to exploit the high investment potential of smaller companies listed on global equity markets. Many smaller companies are not widely researched, opening up the potential for our detailed fundamental analysis to identify valuation anomalies. The greater inherent ability of smaller enterprises to grow faster than more mature, larger companies, is also positive for the long term outlook.

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Key points

This trust remains the only investment trust to offer investor access to a broadly spread global smaller companies portfolio. The portfolio consists of individual smaller company investments within the US, UK and European markets, and fund holdings targeting smaller companies in Japan, Asia, Latin America and other smaller territories The dividend of the Company has risen for 42 years in a row, benefiting from a growing income stream from the investment portfolio.

Past performance is not a guide to future performance.

Fund facts
Investment manager F&C Management Limited
Benchmark 30% Numis UK Smaller Companies (excluding investment companies) Index / 70% MSCI all country World ex UK Small Cap Index
AIC sector Global Growth
Launch date 1889
Total assets £454.6 million (as at 30.06.14)
Currency Sterling
ISIN GB0000175058
SEDOL 17505
Key dates
Annual general meeting Thursday 24 July 2014 Chartered Accountants Hall
Year end 30 April
Dividend payment date(s) August and January
Ex-dividend date(s) July and December
Announcement dates Half year results: Monday 15 December 2014
Final results: Monday 16 June 2014

Fund manager commentary

Smaller company markets around the world delivered varied returns in June, with gains in sterling terms coming through in Japan, the US and many emerging markets, while UK and European markets weakened. To a degree this reflected a reversal of the performance over recent times and in the UK in particular, some kind of pull-back was probably overdue. Here, the Bank of England Governor’s comments around the potential for an early increase in interest rates were unhelpful for sentiment. The Company’s NAV was nevertheless up for the month and slightly ahead of the Benchmark.

In the UK, our portfolio beat the local small cap index, with good returns from recent purchases Clipper Logistics (online logistics operator) and niche engineer Pressure Technologies. In real estate, Max Property was strong as the company announced strong results and letting news. We were also a little ahead in Europe with the star performer being in financials with structured products company Leonteq reporting strong results, while on the industrial side, Kuka announced strong orders. There was some profit taking however in automotive related stock Plastics Omnium.

In the US, our portfolio was just behind the Russell 2000 index in the month. Rex Energy’s production growth has been delayed a little, and shares in car parts supplier LKQ suffered from a decline in scrap metal prices. More positively shares in Pernix Therapeutics continued to respond well to recent deal news, and FTI Consulting announced better than expected earnings guidance.

Our Japanese small cap funds once again performed well and were ahead of the small cap index which itself was strong as sentiment surrounding the market and economic outlook improved. Of our Asian facing funds, Scottish Oriental Smaller Companies performed well and its discount came in, helping returns further.

The Company announced its 2013/14 results in June, and plans for an issue of up to £40m Convertible Unsecured Loan Stock. Details of this can be found on the website and shareholders should have received details in the post in relation to the shareholder votes and how to apply for Convertible Unsecured Loan Stock. We look forward to seeing shareholders at the AGM and General Meetings to be held on 24th July.

As at 30 June 2014

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