During the fourth quarter of 2023, the return of Carmignac Portfolio Human Xperience (A share class) was 6.22%. This compares to a return on the fund’s reference indicator of 6.42% over the same period, meaning that for the calendar year the fund rose +22.62%, and above its reference indicator which rose +18.1%.
Global equity markets had a positive year, with continued positive momentum. Initially, the positive momentum was driven by the possibility of a cessation of interest rate rises due to falling headline inflation. Later, the ongoing resilience of the US economy pushed expectations of a recession to later in the year or even into 2024. Global markets rose significantly in the final quarter responding to an unequivocally dovish message from central banks, notably the US Federal Reserve (the Fed), that inflation is now under control and that we can look forward to interest rate cuts in 2024. The S&P 500, known for its focus on growth, outperformed other major equity indices over the period, marking its best quarterly performance in three years. Throughout the year, the dominant force behind the index's returns was the 'magnificent seven' tech and artificial intelligence (AI) stocks, which accounted for approximately 80% of the overall returns.
The third quarter was dominated by rising bond yields and hawkish commentary from the Fed, which created downward pressure on Technology and Consumer Staples stocks. In the final quarter, global markets rose in response to a dovish message from central banks, with expectations of interest rate cuts in 2024, thus reversing the narrative of the prior quarter. The markets continue to be confident that central banks had completed their rate hikes, but remain cautious about the duration of restrictive interest rates and the potential impact on the stock market.
During the year, the Fund recorded a positive absolute and relative performance. The main performance came from stock selection. Information Technology, Healthcare, and Consumer Discretionary were the best contributing sectors to our fund.
The beginning of the year was driven by resilient consumer data in the US, falling energy prices in Europe and expectations of falling inflation. The rally was led by the Information Technology sector with our best contributor during the year, Nvidia, climbing more than 90% on the quarter propelled by the fervour around artificial intelligence (AI).
The second quarter was very strong for two of our Healthcare holdings. Eli Lilly and Novo Nordisk, who both provide the new GLP-1 drugs to treat diabetes and obesity, rising 60% and 50% respectively during the year, driven by strong sustained growth from their leading products, a trend which we see likely to last for decades.
Even if the third quarter was dominated by hawkish commentary from the Fed creating downward pressure on relatively highly rated stocks in the Technology and Consumer Staples sectors, as well as heightened concern for highly indebted companies such as those in the Utility and Real Estate sectors, we were under exposed to these areas, which was supportive for our Fund. The best performer in the quarter was Technology driven by extremely bullish statements from Nvidia around the impact on future chips sales to meet the growing demand for artificial intelligence applications (AI). Microsoft, which is a top 10 holding and contributor over the period, was also a major beneficiary – not just because of its stake in OpenAI, but because its current software should benefit from AI functionality becoming embedded in future years cementing their competitive position and their pricing.
In the last quarter, economically sensitive areas like Industrials, Commodities, and Technology performed well, along with sectors sensitive to falling rates like Utilities and Real Estate. Costco, which is one of our top 10 holdings and has a strong CHX Score of 12/100, performed exceptionally well in the last quarter, with a 22% increase. Additionally, Intel, a technology company ranked 32 out of 700 on the Forbes World's Best employer ranking, demonstrated the importance of a strong customer and employee score with a remarkable performance of 42% during the period which further validates our approach and strategy.
We maintain a cautious stance on economically sensitive sectors, such as Energy, Materials, Industrials, and Financials/Banks, and have chosen to maintain an underweight position in these sectors. Additionally, we have decided to maintain our overweight exposure to Consumer Staples, as we believe they will serve as a defensive position during periods of economic uncertainty. This prudent strategy is expected to contribute positively to our performance in 2024.
*Risk Scale from the KID (Key Information Document). Risk 1 does not mean a risk-free investment. This indicator may change over time. **The Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regulation (SFDR) 2019/2088 is a European regulation that requires asset managers to classify their funds as either 'Article 8' funds, which promote environmental and social characteristics, 'Article 9' funds, which make sustainable investments with measurable objectives, or 'Article 6' funds, which do not necessarily have a sustainability objective. For more information please refer to https://eur-lex.europa.eu/eli/reg/2019/2088/oj.
|Carmignac Portfolio Human Xperience
|Carmignac Portfolio Human Xperience
|+ 19.7 %
|+ 5.9 %
|+ 14.7 %
|+ 7.6 %
Source : Carmignac at 31 Jan 2024 ..
Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future performance. Performances are net of fees (excluding possible entrance fees charged by the distributor).
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