It's been about a month since Neil Woodford froze up his troubled flagship fund and told investors that he was going to need his time and their money to figure some shit out. And since they're still asking when they might be able to get their assets out from under his management, The Oracle of Oxford would like to respond "Not NOW, thank you!"
Link’s decision to continue with the suspension of investor dealing in the Equity Income fund is to ensure investors’ interests are protected. It affords Neil and the team the required time to execute the changes to the portfolio that we have outlined previously, in order to deliver the best possible outcomes for you, our investors.
When the fund reopens, you will see a much more liquid portfolio, but one that reflects the same investment strategy. The portfolio will continue to be focused on undervalued companies, but the majority of them will be FTSE 100 and FTSE 250 index constituents.
So just sit tight you neurotic little greed monsters! Neil and his team are going to fix this and not lose 18% like last year.
And Neil's not saying you'll never get your money, he's just saying you'll get it once he earns it back by overhauling the investment strategy you signed up for...
In March 2019, we announced our intention to implement a shift within the fund’s portfolio, away from unquoted holdings (private companies), towards a portfolio consisting of larger, more liquid stocks. Neil and the team have already made positive progress in selling parts of the less liquid quoted exposure from the portfolio, and we are in the process of appointing a partner who will work alongside us to help maximise value from the fund’s exposure to unquoted holdings.
The suspension will be lifted when the fund’s repositioning is complete, with less exposure to illiquid stocks. Until then, we are committed to operating the fund in a way that continues to protect the value of your savings, both for those who wish to remain invested and for others who may seek to withdraw from the fund.
This must be comforting for you to read.