UK/IRELAND/JAPAN - The investment case for Japan remains a strong one despite recent criticism, according to Edinburgh-based investment manager Martin Currie.
The firm has just won Japanese long-only mandates worth £183m in Frank Russell Company’s Dublin-domiciled multi-manager programme.
But according to a recent report by ratings agency Standard & Poor’s (S&P) more managers are turning to smaller markets such as Korea, Malaysia and Thailand instead. S&P recorded a “significant shift” in assets allocated between Asian countries, whereby Japan experienced a dip to 36% from 41% last year. Most managers who were bearish on Japan cited slow economic and corporate reform, deflationary pressures and a weak banking system.
Head of Martin Currie's Japan team Michael Thomas said: Corporate reform and share buy-backs mean that attractive opportunities abound in Japan - even if structural economic reform continues to be delayed.
“And on grounds of relative valuation, we think the investment case for Japan is strong.
Martin Currie joins three other managers in each fund: Jardine Fleming Investment Management International, JP Morgan Investment Management and TCW London International.
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