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New Zealand fund managers 'world class'

New Zealanders don't know how lucky they are to have quality fund managers operating in their back yard, according to a top researcher.

Tuesday, March 6th 2012, 6:31AM 1 Comment

by Niko Kloeten

Morningstar head of research Chris Douglas said the general public may not realise it, but New Zealand's fund management sector "stacks up quite well" internationally, including in comparison with fund managers in Australia.

"There are a number of world class fund managers in New Zealand.  A number of them have proven themselves in other markets overseas and live in New Zealand for personal reasons and family reasons."

Morningstar handed out its Fund Manager of the Year awards last week and Douglas said the sector had come a long way in this country in only a few years.

"Rewind five years and it wasn't tax efficient to invest in managed funds, there was very low appetite from investors and there were very few products available," he said.

He cited the emergence of new players in the market such as Brook Walter Scott, which won the international equities category, and Elevation Capital, which was a finalist in the same category, as proof of how the market had changed since then.

"These new managers are coming to the market because there are more opportunities now and better structures now. 

"In the last five years there have been dramatic changes from a regulatory, tax and even a products perspective, and investors are being rewarded."

Morningstar chief executive, Australia and New Zealand Anthony Serhan said while the Australian fund management industry is much larger, there are some things New Zealand fund managers do better.

"One thing New Zealand has always been better at is having a global outlook on investing.  New Zealand has probably had a higher willingness to look outside New Zealand for opportunities than Australia has had to look outside Australia."

Niko Kloeten can be contacted at niko@goodreturns.co.nz

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Comments from our readers

On 7 March 2012 at 6:47 am Collin said:
While I hope that Mr. Douglas is correct with his comments it is important to point out that Morningstar publishes an annual report called the 'Global Fund Investor Experience'. In this report the New Zealand fund management sector is regularly criticised by Morningstar for various practices. In the 2011 edition New Zealand placed last out of 22 countries. Seems like contrasting viewpoint from the same organistation.
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