e-fundresearch: Which benchmark do you adhere to?
Bennett: MSCI Europe (ex UK) Index.
e-fundresearch: Are you also responsible for other funds at the moment?
Bennett: • Henderson Gartmore European Long Short Equity
• Henderson Gartmore European Pan European Fund.
e-fundresearch: What is the total volume that you manage in all your funds?
Bennett: €2.8bn (at 29 February 2012).
e-fundresearch: Regarding the performance: which performance did you achieve since the beginning of the year and in the years 2007-2011? Absolutely and relatively to the benchmark?
Bennett: 8.26% year to date (at 31 March 2012).
e-fundresearch: How content are you with your own performance in the last years and this year?
Bennett: How content…I’m afraid, but I think I am never content.
e-fundresearch: How are you able to deliver added value for your investors with your performance?
Bennett: We belief that stock prices and profitability are mean reverting, ie that prices and returns eventually move back towards the mean or average. We therefore pay careful attention to relative valuations between stocks and sectors. We seek to identify sectors of the market that are unjustly unloved and individual stocks where a positive earnings outlook has been overlooked or is not fully reflected in the share price. Research is therefore concentrated on identifying industry themes and catalysts for growth amongst blue chip stocks and under-researched mid-cap stocks.
e-fundresearch: How long have you been a fund manager already?
Bennett: 25 years.
e-fundresearch: What were your biggest successes and your biggest disappointments in your career as fund manager?
Bennett: Biggest success – selling out of the TMT sectors in Spring 2000 just before the crash.
Biggest disappointment – that short termism has only ever got worse.
e-fundresearch: What kind of capital market situation do we have at the moment? How do you act in this environment?
Bennett: We have manipulated capital markets owing to central banks’ experiments with money printing, though this is called quantitative easing these days. In his scenario we don’t act too differently from what we have done in the past: we keep our eye on the long term, ie take a five to ten year view.
e-fundresearch: What are the special challenges in this environment?
Bennett: The main challenges are short term pressures to perform over meaningless periods such has 3 or 12 months.
e-fundresearch: What objectives do you have till the end of the year and in the mid term for the upcoming 3 to 5 years?
Bennett: My main objective as always is to outperform.
e-fundresearch: Do you model yourself on someone? Any ideals?
e-fundresearch: What motivates you in your job?
Bennett: Fear of failure.
e-fundresearch: What else do you want to achieve or do you have any further aims as a fund manager?
Bennett: Nothing else – only performance.
e-fundresearch: What other profession would you have taken interest in, apart from becoming a fund manager?
Bennett: A barrister.
e-fundresearch: Thank you for the interview!