Price (GBX)
755.00 -1.95%
Open / Last close
763.00 / 755.00
High / Low
764.00 / 750.00
Bid / Offer
756.00 / 757.00
Special Condition: -
Trading Status: Market Close
As at 01.06.20 04:07:07 - All data delayed at least 15 minutes

Alliance Trust PLC (The) instruments

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Equity (1)
Code Instrument name Price Change Type Documentation
ATSTORD 2.5P755.00

Price information

What's this?
Open price
Previous close price / date
755.00 / 29 May 2020
52 week range
544.00 / 876.00
YTD return
1 year return

Instrument information

What's this?
Instrument market cap (£m)
Earnings per share
Dividend (yield)
1.66 %
Issue date
21 June 2006
Market identifier code (MIC)
Country of share register
Market segment
Trading service
Date Time Price CurrencyVolume Trade ValueTrade type Trade flag MIC
29.05.20 17:43:14 756.97 GBX 264 1,998.40 Off-Book TNCP XOFF
29.05.20 17:39:47 754.97 GBX 1,037 7,829.08 Off-Book TNCP XOFF
29.05.20 17:39:47 754.93 GBX 144 1,087.09 Off-Book TNCP XOFF
29.05.20 17:29:34 754.47 GBX 83 626.21 Off-Book TNCP XOFF
29.05.20 17:28:50 754.46 GBX 172 1,297.68 Off-Book TNCP XOFF

Equity Research

from Alliance Trust PLC (The)
Alliance Trust - Overview

Alliance Trust (ATST) is one of the UK’s oldest and largest investment trusts. Almost three years ago, on April 1 2017, the trust adopted a new approach which sees management of the portfolio outsourced to nine fund management groups in different parts of the world, each tasked with managing a portfolio comprised of a concentrated, bespoke selection of their fund managers’ best ideas. The management groups in this stable – many of them otherwise out of reach for ordinary investors – are selected and overseen by Willis Towers Watson (WTW), which manages allocations toward them so that performance is primarily driven by stock selection in the long run, rather than by sector, style or country weightings. In August 2019 WTW brought a new fund manager onto the roster. Vulcan Value Partners, a manager that WTW has known and liked for many years, was added when Vulcan reopened for new capacity. In the first two years under the new strategy, ATST has generated strong returns relative to both the benchmark and comparable open and closed-ended global peer groups. The past year in particular has seen the trust deliver impressive returns, benefiting from the blend of both growth and value managers which the portfolio contains as the market has rotated slightly to the latter. ATST’s discount narrowed significantly around December 2016 when the trust announced the change in strategy. The trusts average discount in 2018 was 6% and the board continues to manage the discount, and is committed to buying back shares where necessary. Currently the trust trades at a discount of 4.1%, relatively wide in comparison to its peers.

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Because they’re worth it

Fees in the fund management world are a hot topic, and average fees across collective investment funds around the world have seen relentless declines. According to research from Morningstar, the average asset-weighted fee for actively managed equity funds has fallen by 18% since 2013, compared with a 28% decline at passive funds.

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A marathon not a sprint

“The single greatest edge an investor can have is a long-term orientation”, according to Seth Klarman, the American billionaire hedge fund investor. On the Hargreaves Lansdown platform the number of people with more than £1m in their ISA has increased from just three in 2012 to 168 today. However while this sounds very impressive, £1m doesn’t seem that fanciful given full historic contributions to PEPs and ISAs since 1987 would have added up to more than £291,000. We calculate that an investor would “only” have to have generated an IRR of 7.74% on every year’s subscription to have generated a seven-figure sum today. ISAs offer an excellent way to grow capital and benefit from compounding (that eighth “wonder of the world”) over the very long- term entirely free from the clutches of HMRC. Investments are tax neutral within the ISA wrapper, and in contrast to a SIPP, there is zero tax payable on the entire amount when capital or income is withdrawn. Another contrast to a SIPP is that there is no size limit – under current legislation an individual’s ISA can be as big as it gets. Whilst building an ISA pot of £1m is clearly a huge achievement, our analysis suggests that many investment trust managers would have delivered significantly more. There are around 48 trusts for which we have meaningful statistics going back to 1987 which have had broadly the same strategy and/or elements of the same management team over this time. Of these, an incredible 34 trusts would have delivered a total ISA value (share price returns net of fund fees, but before the ISA wrapper fees) of over £1m, if an individual had put their entire PEP / ISA subscriptions in the same trust every year.

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Alliance Trust - Overview

Alliance Trust (ATST) is one of the UK’s oldest and largest investment trusts and has delivered a growing dividend to shareholders every year over the last 52 years. In 2017, the trust changed its spots dramatically, adopting an innovative portfolio management approach that uses eight managers, each tasked with managing a bespoke highly-concentrated portfolio, selected and overseen by Willis Towers Watson (WTW). WTW chooses a line-up of stock pickers that has similar characteristics to the MSCI ACWI benchmark, in terms of style, country and sector exposures, to ensure that performance is primarily driven by stock selection in the long run. As such, and with net assets of c.£2.7bn, ATST is a truly ‘global’ trust. Having had nearly two years in the new form, the equity portfolio has generated a decent return during what could be considered a difficult global market for active stock selection. The equity portfolio has risen by 10.4% since the start of April 2017 to January 2019, outperforming the MSCI ACWI index by almost 1.6%. Relative performance was somewhat hindered over 2018, as we saw a much smaller than usual number of (large cap) companies outperform the index during the first nine months of the year and a strong, broad-based market correction in the final quarter. ATST’s discount narrowed significantly on the announcement of the change in strategy in January 2017 and the board continues to manage the discount where necessary. Over 2018 the trust traded on an average discount of 6% and this has since come in to the current discount of 4.9%.

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The income edge

Last year saw investment trusts soar in popularity among both retail investors and wealth managers. Statistics from the AIC show that during 2017, independent financial advisors bought £990m-worth of investment trusts through platforms. That was 46% more than in 2016, and 41% more than the previous record of £704m in 2015. This increased demand has shown itself in the average discount across the investment trust universe, which has narrowed markedly, as shown in the chart below.

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