RNS Number : 0511F

Athelney Trust PLC

02 November 2022

Athelney Trust PLC

Legal Entity Identifier:


The unaudited net asset value of Athelney Trust was 207.0p at 31 October 2022.

Fund Manager's comment for October 2022

The broad UK market rose this month with the FTSE 250 index increasing by 4.2% and the large cap FTSE 100 Index gaining 2.91% after investors reacted positively to Mr Sunak's confirmation as the UK's new Prime Minister. The AIM All-Share Index and the Small Cap Index did not respond in the same way, declining by 0.03% and 0.43% respectively while the Fledgling Index declined by 0.71%. Long-term bonds, which were at the centre of a chaotic sell-off last month that prompted emergency intervention from the Bank of England, have recovered with the UK 30-year gilt yield at the time of writing at 3.57%.

The release of the Governments revised fiscal plans has been delayed by more than two weeks to November 17th amid reports that officials are considering bigger spending cuts and tax hikes to fill a massive fiscal hole threatening the country's economic growth.

Recent manufacturing and services PMI survey data reflected a larger than expected fall in October, with the manufacturing PMI dropping to 45.8 and the services PMI to 47.5. Average prices charged by private sector firms rose, while the index reflecting business expectations for the year ahead, fell by over six points, the largest decline in growth expectations since March 2020. Optimism in both sectors hit a 2.5-year low, negatively affected by political uncertainties, rising interest rates and persistently high inflation. However, in the US, real GDP expanded by an annualized 2.6% during the third quarter even though consumer confidence fell to 102.5 in October.

In an attempt to bring inflation back down to its 2% target, the European Central Bank raised its key interest rate by 75 basis points to 1.75%, bringing borrowing costs to their highest levels since 2009. Conversely, other central bankers have decided to adopt a less harsh approach to interest rate increases as there is evidence that the underlying drivers of inflation are starting to ease.

This resulted in a 7.99% increase in t he S&P 500 Index in October, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average increased by a larger amount, up by a notable 13.95%. The tech heavy Nasdaq Composite was up by a meagre 3.9% all of which led to a 7.11% increase in the MSCI Index over the month

The Athelney portfolio, when compared to the UK indices performed well, up by 4.5% during the month and, after providing for expenses, the NAV reflected an increase of 4.07%. We made no changes to the portfolio, choosing to sit on the sidelines during this period of extreme political instability with cash comprised 11.6% of the portfolio at month end.

Fact Sheet

An accompanying fact sheet which includes the information above as well as wider details on the portfolio can be found on the Fund's website www.athelneytrust.co.uk under "About" then select "Latest Monthly Fact Sheet".

Background Information

Dr. Emmanuel (Manny) Pohl AM

Manny is Chairman and Chief Investment Officer of E C Pohl & Co ("ECP"), an investment management company and has been a major shareholder in Athelney trust for many years.

E C Pohl & co is licensed by the Australian Financial services (licence no.421704).



Manny Pohl and the ECP group has AUD2.7bn (GBP1.5 billion) under its management including four listed investment companies, three listed in Australia and one in the UK:

   --    Flagship Investments (ASX code:FSI) 

AUD95m https://flagshipinvestments.com.au

   --    Barrack St Investments (ASX code: BST) 

AUD37m www.barrackst.com

   --    Global Masters Fund Limited (ASX code: GFL) 

AUD33m www.globalmastersfund.com.au

   --    Athelney Trust plc (LSE code: ATY) 

GBP6m www.athelneytrust.co.uk

Athelney Trust plc Investment Policy

The investment objective of the Trust is to provide shareholders with prospects of long-term capital growth with the risks inherent in small cap investment minimised through a spread of holdings in quality small cap companies that operate in various industries and sectors. The Fund Manager also considers that it is important to maintain a progressive dividend record.

The assets of the Trust are allocated predominantly to companies with either a full listing on the London Stock Exchange or a trading facility on AIM or ISDX. The assets of the Trust have been allocated in two main ways: first, to the shares of those companies which have grown steadily over the years in terms of profits and dividends but, despite this progress, the market rating is favourable when compared to future earnings and dividends; second, to those companies whose shares are standing at a favourable level compared with the value of land, buildings or cash in the balance sheet.

Athelney Trust was founded in 1994. In 1996 it was one of the ten pioneer members of the Alternative Investment Market ("AIM"). In 2008 the shares became fully listed on the main market of the London Stock Exchange. Athelney Trust has a successful progressive dividend growth record and the dividend has grown every year since 2004. According to the Association of Investment Companies (AIC) Athelney Trust is one of only "22 investment companies that have increased their dividend every year between 10 and 20 years - the next generation of dividend heroes" (as at 20/03/2018). See link




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(END) Dow Jones Newswires

November 02, 2022 03:50 ET (07:50 GMT)

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