Morley changes boost Norwich Union's UK equity funds

Article date: 7 March 2008

The performance of Norwich Union's key UK equity funds has improved following a reorganisation of its management team.

The funds are managed by Morley Fund Management. Morley began restructuring its equities team in May 2006 with the appointment of Mervyn Douglas to run the Norwich UK Focus Fund. In June 2006 Chris Murphy joined from Axa Framlington to manage the Norwich UK Equity Fund. They joined Dan Roberts who manages the UK Equity Income Fund.

  • The Norwich UK Focus fund has produced 1st quartile performance since manager by Mervyn Douglas took over in 2006
  • The Norwich UK Equity fund has produced first quartile performance since Chris Murphy took over the fund in 2006

Performance of Norwich Union UK Focus and UK Equity funds since managers appointed:

Fund

% Growth*

Quartile ranking

Manager

Norwich UK Focus

11.57

1

Mervyn Dogulas

Norwich UK Equity

11.55

1

Chris Murphy

Total average of funds in sector (336)

7.83

-

-

  

* % growth 30 June 2006 - 28 February 2008. Source: Lipper Hindsight as at February 2008 bid to bid net income reinvested
Mervyn Douglas is AA-rated by Citywire and the UK Focus Fund is A-rated by Standard & Poor's.

Discrete annual performance of Norwich Union UK Focus and UK Equity funds

1yr % growth
28/02/07 - 28/02/08

1yr & growth
28/02/06 - 28/02/07

1yr % growth
28/02/05 - 28/02/06

Value

Qlt

Value

Qlt

Value

Qlt

Norwich UK Focus

-6.48

3

20.41

1

21.82

2

Norwich UK Equity

-1.88

2

13.25

2

18.35

4

Total average of funds

-3.68

11.35

22.03

1yr % growth
27/02/04 - 25/02/05

1yr % growth
28/02/03 - 27/02/04

Value

Qlt

Value

Qlt

Norwich UK Focus

9.44

4

45.73

1

Norwich UK Equity

11.36

3

38.03

2

Total average of funds

12.83

39.16

Source: Lipper Hindsight as at February 2008 bid to bid net income reinvested

Performance of Norwich UK Equity Income fund

Fund

% Growth*

Quartile ranking

Manager

Norwich UK Equity Income

17.14

2

Dan Roberts

Total average of funds in sector (91)

16.91

-

-

* % growth 1 September 2005 - 28 February 2008. Source: Lipper Hindsight as at February 2008 bid to bid net income reinvested
The UK Equity Income fund is A-rated by Standard & Poor's.

Discrete annual performance of Norwich Union UK Equity Income fund

1yr % growth
28/02/07 - 28/02/08

1yr % growth
28/02/06 - 28/02/07

1yr % growth
28/02/05 - 28/02/06

Value

Qtl

Value

Qtl

Value

Qtl

Norwich UK Equity Income

-6.61

2

11.06

3

23.42

2

Total average of funds in sector

-7.69

11.62

22.45

1yr % growth
27/02/04 - 25/02/05

1yr % growth
28/02/03 - 27/02/04

Value

Qtl

Value

Qtl

Norwich UK Equity Income

17.09

2

40.24

1

Total average of funds in sector

16.94

36.10

Source: Lipper Hindsight as at February 2008 bid to bid net income reinvested

Warning: Past performance is not an indicator of future performance. The value of UK equity funds can fall and rise and is not guaranteed. Customers may not get back their original investment.

James Dalby, fund development manager at Norwich Union, said: "The strengthening of the Morley equities team has revitalised a key area of our portfolio. Traditionally, Norwich Union has been seen strong in fixed income and property and we're confident that, with continued good performance, our equities range will also become recognised as an industry leader."

David Lis, Morley's head of UK equities, said: "Two years ago we set out to build a talented team of fund managers that could rank among the best in the industry and I believe we've been 100% successful in achieving that aim. By giving our managers the freedom to back their convictions, to invest to win and to move away from the more traditional and widely used approach of playing it safe and investing not to lose, we're delivering a stronger performance for Norwich Union and all our other clients."

The UK equities team now manages about £12bn of UK equities, representing about 7% of Morley's total funds under management of £164bn. Norwich Union's collective investment businesses had £10.8bn under management at the 31 December 2007. Both firms are part of the Aviva plc group of companies.

-ends-

Press office contacts:
David Gwyer 07800 693187
Beth Saint 020 7809 8125

Notes to editors:

About Norwich Union
Norwich Union is the UK's largest insurer. It is a leading provider of life, pensions and investment products and one of the largest financial adviser (FA) providers. FAs provide over 70% of the company's long-term savings business in the UK. Norwich Union is the UK's largest general insurer with a market share of around 14%, with a focus on insurance for individuals and small businesses.

About Morley
Morley is the UK-based asset management business of Aviva plc. Firms within the Morley group of companies manage £164bn (€223bn) from offices around the world as at 31 December 2007. Morley manages both institutional and retail funds. It also acts as investment manager for a range of retail investment funds, marketed in the UK under the Norwich Union brand and in Europe under the Morley name. The property team manages in excess of £31bn (€43bn) of UK and European property assets.

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