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Mercer given bronze rating

Morningstar has given bronze ratings to Mercer’s KiwiSaver schemes.

Friday, August 7th 2015, 6:00AM

Bronze, silver or gold ratings are used to indicate Morningstar’s level of conviction in its recommendation of funds.

The research house said the insights of a global team of investment professionals and extensive diversification at the asset and fund level were characteristics that make Mercer KiwiSaver an attractive option.

“Mercer takes a long-term view when building its portfolios and will venture into esoteric asset classes, such as unlisted assets and alternatives, to source value. The portfolios boast the widest investment opportunity set in the market, and diversification across managers is high. For instance, no other KiwiSaver providers we cover invest into unlisted infrastructure or natural resources.”

Morningstar said that diversification meant Mercer funds performed well when traditional asset classes were performing poorly but lagged when markets were strong.“

The local team has the flexibility to tactically tilt the portfolio to reflect short-term views and exploit mispriced opportunities. This has the potential to add value but execution is paramount and introduces market-timing risk. This was the case in 2014 when the team mistimed the bottoming of sovereign bond yields, an underweight position detracting from performance. However, we are confident the team can add real value over the longer term.”

It said Mercer was competitively priced compared to others in the market but long-term performance was weighed down by a poor year in 2012.

Tags: KiwiSaver Mercer

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