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Bankers Investment Trust (The)

Outperforming benchmarks old and new

Review | Investment trusts | 29 May 2018

The Bankers Investment Trust (BNKR) is celebrating its 130th anniversary with a 51st consecutive year of annual dividend growth, and a new FTSE World index benchmark that better reflects its investment approach. Recent performance has been strong, buoyed by good returns from the US portfolio and eye-catching outperformance in China, while dividends grew ahead of forecasts in FY17. Manager Alex Crooke cautions that recent sterling strength could be a headwind for overseas dividend income in the current period, although the trust’s large revenue reserve (1.8x the FY17 dividend) and focus on stocks with attractive dividend growth should help to ensure that BNKR’s long record of year-on-year growth is maintained. Crooke has recently been appointed co-head of equities at Janus Henderson Investors, but remains committed to overseeing BNKR.

Bankers Investment Trust (The)

Stock selection drives positive performance

Review | Investment trusts | 02 Oct 2017

The Bankers Investment Trust (BNKR) invests globally, with the aim of generating higher long-term total returns for its largely UK investor base than it could have achieved in its home market. Share price and NAV returns are ahead of the benchmark FTSE All-Share Index over both the short and longer term, with annualised NAV total returns of more than 15% pa over five years. BNKR also aims to grow its dividend ahead of inflation, and has the second-longest record of unbroken dividend growth of any investment company, on track for a 51st year in FY17. Lead manager Alex Crooke, at the helm since 2003, has slightly reduced the North America allocation as leading economic indicators begin to look less favourable, diverting resources to European portfolio manager Tim Stevenson, who is finding good value opportunities particularly among financial stocks.

Bankers Investment Trust (The)

50 years of growing dividends

Review | Investment trusts | 14 Mar 2017

The Bankers Investment Trust (BNKR) aims to reward investors who take the additional risk of investing overseas with total returns in excess of those they could have achieved at home (as measured by the FTSE All-Share Index). The trust has a diversified approach, with lead manager Alex Crooke setting the geographical allocation, and regional sub-portfolios managed by specialists at Henderson Global Investors. Value and income are key tenets of the investment process, and the trust has recently achieved a record 50th year of annual dividend growth. BNKR has a long-term record of outperformance versus its benchmark. In the past year it has simplified its fee structure and acted as one of two rollover vehicles for investors in Henderson Global Trust, boosting assets under management by c £60m.

Henderson Global Trust

Proposed rollover with choice of strategies

Review | Investment trusts | 31 Mar 2016

On 1 February 2016 the directors of Henderson Global Trust (HGL) announced that they had agreed in principle to combine the trust with stablemate Henderson International Income Trust (HINT), with an option for shareholders in HGL to roll their investment over into the Henderson-managed Bankers Investment Trust (BNKR) if they wished to continue to follow a global growth strategy. HGL had a market capitalisation of £138.9m at 23 March and had traded at an average discount of c 10% over one, three and five years in spite of an active share buyback programme. HINT has traded at an average premium of 1.1% since launch in 2011, and it was felt that combining to create a bigger trust under the HINT strategy would be in the interests of current and future shareholders. In this note we explain the rollover options for HGL investors and outline the timescale for action.

Bankers Investment Trust (The)

Global portfolio with 49 years of dividend growth

Review | Investment trusts | 14 Mar 2016

The Bankers Investment Trust (BNKR) is a long-established, globally invested fund with a focus on achieving long-term capital growth greater than that of the FTSE All-Share index, and above-inflation dividend growth. Lead manager Alex Crooke makes use of the substantial resources of Henderson Global Investors, delegating ex-UK stock selection to regional specialists. BNKR has recently achieved its 49th consecutive annual dividend increase, the joint-longest record in the investment company sector. A proposal to merge its stablemate Henderson Global Trust with Henderson International Income Trust could see BNKR o which will be offered as a rollover option to investors who wish to retain a global growth mandate o receive a boost to its assets under management.

Bankers Investment Trust (The)

Global growth with growing income

Review | Investment trusts | 13 Jul 2015

The Bankers Investment Trust (BNKR) is a global investment trust that aims to deliver capital growth in excess of the return on the FTSE All-Share index, as well as growing its dividend by more than the rate of UK inflation. Lead manager Alex Crooke looks after UK stock selection (c 38% of the portfolio) and sets the geographical asset allocation; regional portfolios are run by specialists from Henderson Global Investors' well resourced fund management team. While there is no overall ‘house style', all the managers are focused on not overpaying for growth. 12-month returns to 30 June have been particularly strong versus the benchmark and the trust is on track to grow its dividend for a 49th successive year.

Bankers Petroleum

A masterclass in unlocking heavy oil potential

QuickView | Oil & gas | 21 Apr 2015

Since 2004 Bankers Petroleum has grown production at its Albanian heavy oilfield, Patos-Marinza, from 400b/d to more than 20,000b/d in 2014. The group's successful three-point strategy comprising production growth from horizontal drilling, ongoing opex reduction, and unlocking additional reserves through polymer and water injection schemes continues to drive profitability. With Bankers' shares now reflecting the sell-off in crude, we highlight the leverage to a recovery in oil prices and strong balance sheet as evidence of the group's sustainability.

Bankers Investment Trust (The)

Global generalist with 47 years of dividend growth

Initiation | Investment trusts | 10 Dec 2014

The Bankers Investment Trust (BNKR) invests in global equities with the objective of beating the FTSE All-Share capital return and increasing its dividend annually ahead of RPI inflation. Managed by Alex Crooke at Henderson Global Investors, it has a relatively high weighting (c 40%) in the UK, although this is expected to fall gently in the coming years. BNKR has one of the highest yields in the AIC Global sector (2.5% at 8 December), which may have helped propel it to a premium to NAV in late 2013/early 2014, and has raised its dividend for 47 successive years. It has fallen to a slight discount in the recent spell of market volatility, which may represent a more attractive entry point for long-term investors.

Arbuthnot Banking Group

Growth and investment

Outlook | Financials | 27 Mar 2014

ABG's retail and private banking divisions have both produced strong growth in loans, deposits, and assets managed leading to good revenue growth (group up 53%). It also booked a £6.5m gain on the sale of its new head office. ABG has used this revenue growth and one-off gain to fund investments in new offices (Dubai and Everyday Loans), hire staff (private bankers and SME lenders) and develop new product infrastructure as well as a special dividend. After all this, it still delivered a 27% growth in NAV. With strong capital ratios and funding, it is well placed to exploit further growth opportunities into 2014 and beyond.

IG Design Group

Present investments

Outlook | Consumer Support Services | 03 Jul 2013

IGR's final results were in line with expectations, with stronger growth in the US offsetting quieter UK and European markets. The major capital investment programme to upgrade manufacturing facilities announced in April delays the deleveraging of the balance sheet but has the support of the group's bankers and improves the longer-term prospects for growing market share and earnings. The share price retrenched sharply on the investment news but we view the reaction as overdone and the valuation is now well below both peers and assets.

Public Service Properties Investments

Update on strategic review

Update | Property | 04 Apr 2012

We have held full year forecasts, notwithstanding the update on the strategic review and dividends. That review continues, with no timetable set for its completion, a situation arguably unchanged from the last update at the end of 2011. This announcement could be interpreted as a sign of willingness on the part of PSPI, its UK tenant (European Care) and its bankers to support such a transaction, in which case shareholders should await documentation before drawing conclusions regarding the implications. The update nonetheless prompted a sharp decline in the share price. That reflected concern over the refinancing of £83m of debt due in September, completion of which is a prerequisite for dividend distributions.

G3 Exploration

Seismic reflections: Falklands' turning point?

Sector Commentary: | Oil & gas | 08 Jul 2011