Neil Woodford’s embattled former protege snubbed in management shake-up at asset manager Invesco
Neil Woodford’s embattled former protege has been snubbed in a management shake-up at asset manager Invesco.
Mark Barnett, who worked under disgraced fund manager Woodford when he was at Invesco, will serve as joint head of the UK equities fund with Martin Walker, a fellow manager with two decades’ experience at the firm.
Barnett had previously held the role by himself.
Snub: Mark Barnett worked under disgraced fund manager Neil Woodford (pictured) when he was at Invesco
Walker will start on January 1 with the brief of trying to shore up confidence in the fund and quell outflows, which have hit £800million-a-week for the past year. Earlier this month, fund rating company Morningstar downgraded its assessment of Barnett’s funds, saying the fall in assets was ‘all too reminiscent of the recent Woodford debacle’.
Trading in Woodford Investment Management’s largest fund, the Equity Income fund, was suspended in June. In October the manager announced he would resign from his remaining investment funds and close his company.
Richard Laing, chairman of the Income and Growth trust run by Barnett, said it had spoken with Invesco about putting the fund manager into special measures.
Barnett also offered an apology to investors for the performance of the fund. In the year to the end of September, Barnett’s UK Strategic Income, High Income and Income funds have seen collective outflows of just over £2billion to leave their assets at £9.1billion.
The pair will continue to run their current portfolio of funds with no changes, Invesco said.