Why the Magellan Financial Group Ltd share price is climbing higher today


Shares in international equities manager Magellan Financial Group Ltd (ASX: MFG) edged around 1.4% higher to $23.95 in afternoon trade after the group revealed a record-breaking $42.6 billion in funds under management (FUM). This is up around 6.5% on the prior month’s level of $39.96 billion and above my own expectations for an amount around $42 billion.

The strong rise in FUM reflects a falling Australian dollar after the Reserve Bank slashed interest rates on May 4 alongside a marginally positive return for global equity markets over the month of May.

The group also delivered net FUM inflows of $158 million for the month with net retail inflows of $247 million across the global equities and infrastructure offerings helping soften the effects of net institutional outflows of $89 million.

Looking ahead, global equities managers such as Magellan, Macquarie Group Ltd (ASX: MQG), Henderson Group plc (ASX: HGG), Platinum Asset Management Limited (ASX: PTM) and BT Investment Management Ltd (ASX: BTT) will all be keeping a watch on the UK’s upcoming referendum on membership of the EU. A ‘Brexit’ vote could sink global equity markets and take the share prices of the aforementioned down with it.

The odds remain against that scenario according to the bookmakers and over the long-term Magellan’s combination of strong investment performance and fund inflows remains attractive. In particular the high-margin retail FUM flows seem to be steadily improving thanks to a widening distribution network, while institutional business development is lumpy, but generally positive.

Magellan shares command something of a premium compared to other fund managers, although its low-cost-to-income ratio, high return on equity, and founder led nature make it easily the best pure play investment manager to own on the ASX in my opinion.

FUM of $42.6 billion is a new record, although it’s still quite a small amount compared to other global asset managers around the world and there’s little to stop Magellan doubling that that over the long term to become a mid-sized player on the global stage.

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Motley Fool contributor Tom Richardson owns shares of Macquarie Group Limited and Magellan Financial Group.

You can find Tom on Twitter @tommyr345

The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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