Watermark Walks Away From Global Shares

By Glenn Dyer | More Articles by Glenn Dyer

Meanwhile, four-year-old fund manager, Watermark has found the global share market scene too tough and is selling its international holdings and retreating to Australia.

Watermark has around $700 million under management and chief investment officer Justin Braitling said in a statement that international equities had become “a strain on the resources in the business and we have not achieved the results for our investors that we had hoped”.

“It was a difficult decision to close the book on our project in global equities…In hindsight, it was too ambitious of us to expect that we could be at the top of our game both in the local market and globally.

“Ultimately, we believe that in focusing closer to home, we can maintain the investment edge that is required to be successful in the long/short investing,” Mr. Braitling told the market.

At least two analysts have left Watermark because of the change in tactics and several other executives have gone to new roles, or are staying to help in the transition.

Watermark said it has started a process of liquidating its international exposures and will concentrate on two core strategies in Australian shares, equity long/short and market neutral.

Mr. Braitling said in the statement “it was a difficult decision to close the book on our project in global equities, particularly given the calibre of investors that we were able to attract to the business. In low or zero beta strategies, an investor needs to be at the top of his or her game to succeed. In hindsight, it was too ambitious of us to expect that we could be at the top of our game both in the local market and globally. Ultimately, we believe that in focusing closer to home, we can maintain the investment edge that is required to be successful in long/short investing”.

Watermark will be competing directly against the likes of AFIC and its satellites, Djerriwarrh and Mirrabooka, Argo and Milton (to name a few).

Watermark did not mention its most recent market performance in Monday’s statement.

Glenn Dyer

About Glenn Dyer

Glenn Dyer has been a finance journalist and TV producer for more than 40 years. He has worked at Maxwell Newton Publications, Queensland Newspapers, AAP, The Australian Financial Review, The Nine Network and Crikey.

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