Data as at: 22/02/2024

Gearing

Gearing policy

A significant advantage over other investment fund structures is the ability to use gearing. Well-judged gearing enhances returns to shareholders.

Borrowing limits

The board's current policy is to permit the fund manager to gear up to 25% of net assets at the time of drawdown or investment, as appropriate. Borrowing limits for this purpose include implied gearing through the use of derivatives.

Ways in which investment companies can magnify income and capital returns, but which can also magnify losses.

At its simplest, gearing means borrowing money to buy more assets in the hope the company makes enough profit to pay back the debt and interest and leave something extra for shareholders.

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how gearing works table

However, if the investment portfolio doesn’t perform well, gearing can increase losses. The more an investment company gears, the higher the risk.

Investment companies can usually borrow at lower rates of interest than you’d get as an individual. They also have flexible ways to borrow – for example they might get an ordinary bank loan or, for split capital investment companies, issue different classes of share.

Not all investment companies use gearing, and most use relatively low levels of gearing.

An indication of the maximum and minimum levels that the company would expect to be geared in normal market conditions.

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