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Poacher turned gamekeeper

Former fund manager - now investment trust chairman - Neil Rogan discusses how his own lessons from the job have helped him in his role...
Alice Rigby
Last update 06 November 2019

Disclosure – Non-substantive Research

This is not substantive investment research or a research recommendation, as it does not constitute substantive research or analysis. With this commentary, Kepler Partners LLP does not intend to influence your investment firm's behaviour. 

While the investment industry normally (rightly) focuses on technicalities and quantitative concepts, early on in our conversation Invesco Asia and Murray Income chair Neil Rogan touches on another side of the industry – the human factor.

As a former fund manager himself, Rogan says he appreciates how the sometimes-grueling nature of making significant investment decisions day-to-day can impact fund managers. And as a board member, he’s in a position to help.

“Fund managers can lose confidence, through things like poor feedback and disappointing client meetings. From a director’s point of view you can watch out for that, through signals like the manager veering away from their style,” he says. “For instance, at Murray Income the manager was buying quality, but it wasn’t performing. They needed someone to say keep confident, keep going, you’re not buying the wrong stocks.”

Of course, offering this support doesn’t mean blindly going along with everything the manager does. As Rogan points out “we also encouraged sell discipline – you ultimately want to be quicker to get out of things that are going wrong. If the manager is overconfident, you want to steer them away from that.”

And he adds that with human emotion there are clear sensitivities, which it is the job of the director to manage - “it’s all about asking things the right way.”

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