Mark Burgess, Head of Research Relationships and Key Account Manager
Chris Wheldon, CFA Portfolio Manager
"Expect volatility but don't panic, would be my view, because before 12 months, I think we'll be looking back, and this event will have passed."
This is the view Magellan's Hamish Douglass delivered to the thousands of investors who packed Sydney's International Convention Centre on Friday night [06-Mar-2020] to hear his latest update.
With fears about the coronavirus pushing stocks closer to a bear market, Douglass adopted a relaxed tone, telling investors to sit tight and take a long-term view. He told the crowd of advisers, industry professionals, retail investors and students.
"Our best view is that this may be six times as serious as the seasonal flu.
"While [the virus] is going to affect a lot more people, I think the spread may well be less because of the extreme containment measures. But with the extreme containment measures is going to come a pretty sharp economic impact around the world, which will realistically be three to six months.
"During that period, I would expect a lot of share price volatility as people react to the headlines. I think if we look a little bit longer out, this flu or pandemic or whatever you want to describe it will have its consequences. But the economic effect is likely to pass very quickly."
Douglass avoided discussing the virus for much of the presentation, devoting his time on stage to how interest rates will affect equity valuations and the rise of the Chinese consumer.
But talk of the virus, which dominated headlines for the days leading up to the event, infected audience question time.
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Also includes the Magellan Global Fund Portfolio Top 10 Holdings, as at 31/12/2019. MHH (their "High Conviction" LIT) hold less positions and is more concentrated (larger positions in less companies, being only their very best ideas) and MHH provided a portfolio update after the market closed on Friday (13-Mar-2020) - which can be viewed here - and includes their top 5 holdings as at 29-Feb-2020 - which are Alibaba, Alphabet (Google), Facebook, Microsoft and Visa.
I know Hamish is very keen to have exposure to cloud computing and the global data storage giants who dominate that space. Magellan isn't invested in Amazon (on valuation grounds only, other than that Hamish loves the business) but the other three main players in that space are Microsoft, Alibaba and Google (Alphabet), which are all core holdings across the various Magellan funds, including MHH & MGG. Tencent are the second largest player (in cloud) in China, and growing fast, and Magellan have recently taken a substantial position in Tencent also. Hamish likes playing global megatrends, and the shift to the cloud is certainly one of those.