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SMSF Awards winners revealed for investment categories

13 August 2020 — 3 minute read

SMSF Adviser is proud to announce the winners of this year’s SMSF Awards for two of the investment categories, including Australian equities and fixed income provider.

Macquarie has taken out the award for Australian Equity Fund Manager and Fixed Income Provider in the SMSF Awards for 2020. Further winners of this year’s awards will be announced over the next week. 

SMSF Awards 2020


It has been another tumultuous year for the SMSF sector, with the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting economic downturn impacting everything from investment to compliance. The ATO and the SMSF sector in general has worked tirelessly to address some of the unforeseen issues arising from the current environment. As always, SMSF professionals and their clients have relied heavily on SMSF service providers to guide them through this period of change. Partnering with firms that are adaptable and agile is critical at the moment and has a direct impact on the confidence and satisfaction of clients. 

Now in its seventh year, the SMSF Awards recognises the excellence and innovation of the best performing operators servicing SMSF professionals. The winners are based on a survey which was distributed to SMSF Adviser’s database of SMSF professionals. The results were collated and determined by an independent analyst. 

Over the next week, SMSF Adviser will be announcing the winners of this year’s awards, beginning with Australian Equities Fund Manager and Fixed Income Provider.


Highly commended: Fidelity

As with other asset classes, Australian equities have been hit hard by difficult business conditions created by COVID-19. Continuing to generate consistent returns for investors is a significant challenge for fund managers in the current environment. This year’s winner says a focus a high-quality companies with solid earnings momentum and decent valuations has helped them to achieve this. 

Scot Thompson, co-head of Macquarie Systematic Investment, Macquarie Asset Management, Macquarie

We’re proud to be recognised with the Australian Equities Fund Manager award, as we’re committed to delivering value for SMSF investors. 

The Macquarie Systematic Investments team has been managing Australian equity assets for some of Australia’s largest institutional investors since 1988. We currently manage over $20 billion in assets across Australian and global equity strategies. 

Our flagship large cap and small cap strategies offer investors exposure to a diversified portfolio of Australian companies constructed using a systematic investment approach that has been developed and refined over 25 years. Our strategies are designed with the aim of achieving consistent active returns throughout the investment cycle which we believe is of value to investors. The funds have delivered strong active returns in 2020 in what has been a challenging period for investors.

To deliver this outcome, we use quantitative techniques to capture desirable stock characteristics in a robust risk-controlled framework. The stock drivers we incorporate in our investment process are grouped into three factor families: quality, sentiment and value. Our portfolio looks to hold higher-quality companies, with solid earnings momentum at a reasonable valuation. Our research has shown that companies with these characteristics typically outperform in the Australian market.


Highly commended: Vanguard

With interest rates currently at record lows and unlikely to increase any time soon, delivering steady returns to investors while ensuring fixed income investments remain truly defensive is becoming increasingly difficult. Macquarie, this year’s winner, attributes its success to its extensive experience in this space dating back to 1980, its exposure to global fixed income markets and a flexible investment approach. 

Brett Lewthwaite, CIO and global head of Macquarie Fixed Income, Macquarie Asset Management, Macquarie Group

We’re pleased to be recognised for our commitment to deliver for clients in the SMSF space. 

The Macquarie Fixed Income team is one of Australia’s largest and most experienced fixed income managers. We have been managing fixed income assets since 1980 and have investment capabilities and resources across our Sydney, Philadelphia, New York and London offices. Our global expertise and experience allow us to offer attractive solutions for our SMSF clients.

Our solutions are well suited to this current low-yield environment, where income and diversification from risk assets is becoming harder to come by. Our flexible and dynamic approach to managing our fixed income strategies allows us to continue seeking the best opportunities on offer across global fixed income markets while remaining true to our investment philosophy and positioning defensively when required. The outcome for investors is a long track record of consistent performance.

We recognise that we are responsible for managing the defensive portion of investors’ portfolios. As such, our focus on delivering consistent income, preserving capital and minimising drawdowns is crucial. A reflection of our commitment and success in achieving these outcomes for clients is demonstrated by the performance of our flagship income fund, the Macquarie Income Opportunities Fund. Since inception, the fund has delivered an unbroken track record of consistent regular income distributions to investors, and excess long-term returns across different market conditions. 

We also recognise it is important that our SMSF clients can access investment solutions and expertise in the way that suits them. We are pleased to provide investors with the ability to invest in Macquarie Fixed Income solutions via mFund, offering greater flexibility to investors to build portfolios how they want.

SMSF Awards winners revealed for investment categories
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