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Investment company performance figures and what they mean

Where possible, the AIC gives past performance figures for every member investment company listed on this website.

An investment company’s performance can be measured in two ways and the AIC’s website shows both:

  • Share price total return (%) – This is the performance of an investment company’s shares. It is the return investors receive and it takes into account any discount or premium.
  • NAV (net asset value) total return (%) – This is the performance of an investment company’s underlying portfolio. It doesn’t take any discounts or premiums into account. As discounts and premiums reflect investor sentiment rather than performance, NAV returns tend to be used by investment company boards and analysts to judge performance.

“Total” return

 A total return measure means any dividends received have been reinvested.

 

Costs

Share price total return and NAV total return take some costs into account. The costs of running the investment company such as fund manager fees and accounting costs are reflected in the performance figures.

Costs which the investor pays which are external to the investment company such as Stamp Duty or fees for buying and selling investment company shares are not included.

 

Benchmarking

Most investment companies have a benchmark which they use to measure their performance. At the end of an investment company’s financial year for example, the board will report on whether it beat or underperformed its benchmark.

The benchmarks used are often indices which match the investment company’s investment strategy, the FTSE 100 or FTSE SmallCap, for example.

You can normally see how an investment company has performed against its benchmark on its monthly factsheet. Investment company factsheets are available on the AIC’s website.

 

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