Fact sheet: Baillie Gifford Japan IT

Rated Fund Information
Rated Funds Group
?Money Observer has arranged all its Rated Funds into easy to understand Rated Fund Groups, comprising funds and investment trusts.
IT Japan
Fund type
Investment Trust
Primary aim
Why Money Observer Rates Baillie Gifford Japan IT

Rated Fund 2015-2018. Run by renowned Japanese equities team

This trust won Money Observer's Best Japan Trust award in 2015 and was highly commended in 2016 and 2017. Sarah Whitley, Baillie Gifford's longest-serving partner, has helped manage the trust since 1991. She will retire in April 2018.

She has led the trust during a period in which the country struggled with the collapse of a property bubble and enduring deflation, and has massively outperformed Japan's Topix stock market index. Her long-term performance is also streets ahead of rivals.

On the basis that Whitley has successfully mentored new talent within her team over the years, we are keeping faith with this trust. Matthew Brett, her deputy on the trust, will become its lead manager, with Praveen Kumar, manager of the smaller company Baillie Gifford Shin Nippon, supporting him as the second manager.

The trust invests in 40 to 70 companies, predominantly medium and smaller-sized, and holdings are purchased on a three- to five-year time horizon. The team is based in Edinburgh but visits Japan regularly and conducts around 500 company meetings a year. The managers' confidence in the Japanese stock market at the end of 2017 was highlighted in their full use of a 12 per cent gearing facility.

In Baillie Gifford Japan, investors can get access to Baillie Gifford's Japan desk, recognised as one of the best in the business. However, shares in the trust traded at a premium to net asset value for most of 2017. The board can issue shares to help reduce the premium and the shares have traded close to par at times, so investors should time their entry carefully.

3 Year Performance
Fund Performance81.3%
Average of Rated Funds Group69.4%
Sector Performance55.8%
Fund information
Fund name
Baillie Gifford Japan Trust PLC
Fund manager company
Baillie Gifford & Co Ltd
Fund type
Investment Trust
Fund managers
  • Sarah Whitleysince 01/01/1991
Highly commended - Best Large Trust 
Winner - Regular savings Developed Markets
Fund objective
This trust aims to pursue long-term capital growth principally through investment in medium to smaller sized Japanese companies which are believed to have above average prospects for growth.
  • Topix
Investment style
No data available.
Investment method
No data available.
Quick stats
1 Year return
1 Year rank in sector
IT Japan
Ongoing charge (OCF)
?A fund’s ongoing charges figure (OCF) is similar to the old-style total expense ratio. It reflects the annual charge to investors in the fund, in percentage terms, but does not include extra performance-related fees (where these are levied) or the fund’s trading expenses on its underlying investments.
Fund size
FE Risk score
?FE Risk Scores measure the riskiness of instruments relative to the FTSE 100 index of shares. Weekly volatility is measured over three years with recent behaviour counting more heavily than earlier behaviour. Cash-type investments will have scores close to zero. Funds will tend to have scores in the 0-150 range. The FTSE 100 is always scored at 100. There is no upper limit.
Mid price
?Net asset value. The NAV per share may be higher or lower than the share price, which in turn is trading at either a discount or a premium to NAV.
?When the market price of an investment trust’s shares is less than the net asset value (NAV) per share then it is trading at a discount to NAV. A trust’s shares are on a premium when they trade at a higher price than the NAV.
?Investment trusts have the ability to borrow money which they invest with the aim of generating a higher return than the cost of the loan. An ungeared trust has a figure of 100. A figure of 110 would represent a trust with 10% gearing.
Top in this sector
Fund name1 Year
Baillie Gifford Jap Tst PLC34%
CC JpnIncGthTsPLC32.3%
JP Morgan Japanese IT plc29.1%
Aberdeen Japan IT PLC16.3%
Schroder Japan Growth plc14.7%
...more in IT Japan

Performance snapshot

Holdings snapshot

  • Japan96.3%
    Money Market3.7%
  • Services22.1%
    Electronic & Electrical Equipment19.4%
    Telecommunications Utilities10%
  • Japanese Equities89.6%
    Property Shares6.7%
    Money Market3.7%

Fund also available on these pension platforms:

Performance vs Sector

Cumulative performance
 1 mth3 mth6 mth1 yr3 yr5 yr
Rank within sector4 / 53 / 53 / 51 / 51 / 41 / 4
Calendar performance
 YTD - 20182017201620152014
Rank within sector3 / 51 / 52 / 52 / 43 / 4
Risk statistics
?Alpha is a measure of a fund's over- or under-performance by comparison to its benchmark. If the Alpha is 5, the fund has outperformed its benchmark by 5%; so the greater the Alpha, the greater the outperformance.
?Beta estimates a fund's volatility by comparison to that of its benchmark. A fund with a beta close to 1 means that the fund will move generally in line with the benchmark. Higher than 1 and the fund is more volatile than the benchmark and vice versa.
?This commonly-used measure calculates the level of return over and above the return of a notional risk-free investment, such as cash. The difference in returns is then divided by the fund's volatility. The resulting ratio is an indication of the amount of excess return generated per unit of risk.
?Volatility (or standard deviation), when applied to an investment fund, expresses its risk. It shows how widely a range of returns varied from the fund's average return over a particular period. For example, if a fund had an average return of 5%, and its volatility was 15, this would mean that the range of its returns over the period had swung between +20% and -10%.
Tracking error
?This measures the standard deviation of a fund's excess returns over the returns of an index or benchmark portfolio. As such, it can be an indication of 'riskiness' in the manager's investment style. A Tracking Error below 2 suggests a passive approach. At 3 and above the the manager will be deploying a more active investment style.
Information ratio
?This is a useful risk-adjusted measure of actively managed fund performance. It is calculated by deducting the returns of the fund's benchmark from the fund's overall returns, then dividing the result by its tracking error. The higher the Information Ratio the better. It is generally considered that a figure of 0.5 reflects a good performance, 0.75 very good, and 1.00 outstanding.
?An indication of how closely correlated a fund is to an index or a benchmark. Values for R-Squared range between 0 and 1, with 0 indicating no correlation at all and 1 showing a perfect match. Values upwards of 0.7 suggest that the fund's behaviour is increasingly linked to its benchmark.
Price movement
52 week high882
52 week low635
Current bid price842
Current offer price845
Current mid price845
2Money Market3.7%
Industry sector
2Electronic & Electrical Equipment19.4%
4Telecommunications Utilities10%
7Real Estate & Construction6.7%
9Money Market3.7%
Asset type
1Japanese Equities89.6%
2Property Shares6.7%
3Money Market3.7%
Individual holdings
6M3 INC2.5%
Fund manager group
Baillie Gifford
Fund manager company
Baillie Gifford & Co Ltd
Fund type
Investment Trust
Fund objective
This trust aims to pursue long-term capital growth principally through investment in medium to smaller sized Japanese companies which are believed to have above average prospects for growth.
  • Topix
Investment style
No data available.
Investment method
No data available.
Fund managers
Sarah Whitley01/01/1991Matthew graduated BA (Hons) in Natural Sciences (Psychology) from the University of Cambridge in 2000 and holds a PhD in Psychology from Bristol University. He joined Baillie Gifford in 2003 and is an Investment Manager in the Japanese Equity Team. Matthew is a co-manager of the Japanese All cap strategy and is a CFA Charterholder.
AIC Member
No data available.
Fund for sale in
United Kingdom
Baillie Gifford Japan Trust PLC
Initial charge-
Annual charge-
Min single investment£0
Min regular saving£0
Available in ISANo
Ongoing charge (OCF)-
Total expense ratio (TER)-
Bid price-
Offer price-
Mid price821.4
Price updated18/05/2018
Institutional or retail classRetail
Citi codeNJEW
Data provided by

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