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Gold Prices Have Surged 23.3% in the Last Six Months

  • Gold and precious metal funds secured eight of the top ten positions in performance tables for March.
  • Commodities and natural resources funds led sector growth with a 7.8% return, followed by UK equity income at 4.4%.
  • Despite varied performance among different funds, risk appetite appeared to be back, with Baillie Gifford Schiehallion Trust leading investment trusts with a 38.7% rise.
Gold Bars

Gold and precious metal funds swept performance tables in March, taking eight of the top ten positions throughout the month.

“There was only one story last month – gold,” said Ben Yearsley, director of Fairview Investing.

“With the price of an ounce rising almost 10 percent in March, it’s no surprise seeing gold equities finally coming to the party.”

In total, gold prices have risen 23.3 percent over the last six months.

The two other funds in the top ten were global value fund Price Value Portfolio, which rose 14.3 percent, and mining fund Baker Steel Electrum, which grew 14.6 percent

By sector, the commodities and natural resources funds performed best, returning 7.8 percent throughout the month, followed by UK equity income at 4.4 percent growth.

“After a strong FTSE showing last month with banks and insurance doing well alongside commodities, it isn’t much of a surprise seeing the UK equity income sector coming a creditable second,” Yearsley added.

However, every sector defined by the Investment Association saw growth in March, with the worst performer being the euro high yield bond sector, which grew 0.08 percent.

Another interesting performer was the ‘property other’ category in fifth best, rising 3.8 percent throughout the month. Despite this, the UK direct property sector was the third worst performer, rising only 0.4 percent.

Top performing funds in March

Returns (percent)

Baker Steel Gold & Precious Metals


Ninety One Global Gold


Charteris Gold & Precious Metals 


Blackrock Gold & General


Ruffer Gold


Source: FE fundinfo

Oxeye Hedged Income was the worst performing fund of the month, but is still neutral on performance over the last year after rising 9.5 percent in January as the top performer that month.

“This fund is either feast or famine and clearly not the fainthearted,” said Yearsley.

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The rest of the poor performers were more varied, with Asia, European and UK funds all making their way into the worst performers.

Worst performing funds in March

Return (percent)

Oxeye Hedged Income


Guinness China A Share



Matthew’s Asia Small Companies 


Aubrey Europe ex UK


Treetop Aubrey European Conviction


Source: FE fundinfo

Yearsley also proclaimed that “risk is back in vogue” as the Baillie Gifford Schiehallion trust took the top spot among investment trusts, rising 38.7 percent.

Other strong performers in the investment trust space included Digital 9 Infrastructure, after the fund overcame an antitrust roadblock to sell off its assets and shutter.

By City AM 

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