"Investment is an art"

26 January 2006
Investors are being advised on how to pick a fund manager that will consistently beat the market.

The tips form part of Fundology – the Secrets of Successful Fund Investing, a new book by John Chatfeild-Roberts, who runs one of Britain's funds of funds.

In it, he explains how to avoid bad performances and putting money in growth areas in an easy-to-read and easy-to-understand format.

"My problem with studies claiming to show that picking the best funds is virtually impossible to do and that costs are all that matter, is that it flies in the face of common sense," Mr Chatfeild-Roberts commented.

"How can it be that there are plenty of investors who lose money to the market consistently? Somebody has to be profiting at their expense."

The author is also critical of those who say that market trackers are the best option for investors.

He says that such passive index-tracking is guaranteed to "underperform" the index it aims to track.

Mr Chatfeild-Roberts maintains that the most important lesson is that people are in charge of their funds because analysis by statisticians can only do so much.

"There are a few very good ones [fund managers] around, though not that many exceptional ones. Investment is an art not a science," he said.

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