Assets tumble at Ashmore as virus takes hold

Assets tumble at Ashmore as virus takes hold

Turmoil in equities has hit Ashmore, the emerging markets fund manager, with assets tumbling 9% to $83.6 billion (£65 billion) for the year to June.

That is down to Covid-19’s impact on markets and the rush by retail investors to take money off the table.

Ashmore insists in the longer term it will prosper, noting that over five years 74% of its funds outperform the benchmark.

Chief executive Mark Coombs said: “The economic and social effects of the virus will continue for some time and the medium to long term impact remains uncertain. However, the huge diversity of Emerging Markets means that countries will be affected and will respond differently, thereby providing a wide range of potential return scenarios for active managers.”

Ashmore says its “team-based culture” means that office working is “optimal”, but notes that staff welfare is the priority in deciding when to return to those offices.

Ashmore shares crashed as the pandemic hit, falling from 570p in February to 311p in March. They have recovered somewhat since then and will open today at 391p.

Coombs added: “Importantly, many emerging nations have the policy flexibility to cope with the challenges, and they provide superior growth and yield prospects compared with many Developed Markets, where high equity valuations and persistently low or negative rates combine with low growth and high levels of debt. This provides clear incentives for investors to increase allocations to both equity and fixed income markets in the emerging world and therefore supports the medium-term growth opportunity for Ashmore’s specialist approach.”