Leveraging the benefit of diversification with Axis Equity Hybrid Fund
Driven by weak global sentiment, the Equity markets continued to remain under pressure as volatility remained elevated amid FPI selling. In such times, prudent asset allocation comes to the aid of the investors. Despite the rollercoaster ride witnessed by the domestic markets, the resilience showcased by investors is noteworthy. However, creating a diversified yet balanced portfolio while attempting to navigate economic headwinds could pose an arduous challenge.
Thankfully, investors can opt for ‘Hybrid’ Funds that allow them the benefit of investing in two or more asset classes under a unified scheme. The equity and debt exposure in a single scheme allows a layer of cushion to the investors’ portfolio. Amongst Hybrid Funds, the Aggressive Hybrid category has started seeing an uptick in interest amongst investors as a potential solution to weather market upheavals while ensuring downside protection.
To better understand this investment category and why it is emerging as a popular choice today, we spoke to Ashish Naik, Equity Fund Manager, Axis Mutual Fund. Here are the key takeaways from the conversation.
Understanding the importance of Asset Allocation
When it comes to determining their asset allocation mix, today investors have a plethora of investment options to choose from. Basis their investment corpus, risk appetite, time horizon, they can opt to invest in Equity, Debt, Gold, ETFs, Real Estate, Commodities, Direct equity etc.
Speaking about how proper asset allocation helps in diversifying investments and risk across different asset classes, Ashish said, “With the asset allocation, the aim is to take advantage of all the market cycles and not let the portfolio get exposed to a single asset class.”
“Since history has demonstrated that various asset classes have minimal correlation between them, the ability of a portfolio to compound over the long term is not impacted significantly, even in the face of economic headwinds,” he added.
What makes the Aggressive Hybrid category important?
With individual asset classes behaving differently during various times in a cycle, Ashish spoke about how Hybrid Funds are equipped as an all-weather long-term investing solution. They usually have lower downside risk and are relatively less volatile due to the core benefit of diversification; thereby reducing overexposure to a particular asset class.
“The Aggressive Hybrid Fund allocates at least 65 percent in equity or equity oriented instruments, offering investors the benefit of equity taxation. The balance is invested into fixed income instruments. Aggressive Hybrid Funds follow a unique proposition of diversification. They provide investors the ease of investing by eliminating the need to invest in numerous funds to gain exposure to different asset classes,” he said.
“A mix of asset classes, which typically have a low correlation with each other can potentially be a good way to generate returns while navigating volatility,” he added.
A Quality-Focused Portfolio
Given the investor anxiety around current volatility, Ashish also spoke about how the Axis Equity Hybrid Fund is a meticulously constructed portfolio of Quality-focused Equity & Fixed Income securities.
“On the equity side, we are running a large cap oriented portfolio and the current exposure to large caps is somewhere between 80 to 85 percent. Even the mid-caps that we hold, are very selective in nature. We want to identify steady compounders, which are more established and have a proven track record. And the debt portfolio is actively managed as well,” he said.
Explaining their debt Investment approach and how the fund focussed on “Investing in best ideas”, he said, “We retain our barbell strategy consisting of a mix of high quality bonds, and low duration assets, including credit as a play on the “carry” theme.”
The investor profile
It is easy for investors to get swayed by the market noise. Most often, investors tend to react to everyday market movements where emotional bias and market exuberance can lead to irrational investment decisions. Ashish explained that, “The Axis Equity Hybrid Fund is targeted to those investors who want to gain exposure to Equity but have a moderate risk appetite. In such cases, the debt cushion has the potential to inject stability and (at times) offset risk to the investor’s portfolio while equities can be leveraged for capital appreciation.”
“Within the hybrid space, this is the fund which can be looked at as a precursor to pure equity investing,” he added.
Source: Axis MF Research
Product Labelling & Riskometer:
Note: Market caps are defined as per SEBI regulations as below: a. Large Cap: 1st -100th company in terms of full market capitalization. b. Mid Cap: 101st -250th company in terms of full market capitalization. c. Small Cap: 251st company onwards in terms of full market capitalization.
Note: The views expressed by the fund manager are individual in nature and meant purely to information sharing. The sector(s)/stock(s)/issuer(s) mentioned in this presentation are for the purpose of illustration only and should not be construed as any research report/recommendation to buy / sell / hold. The Fund manager may or may not choose to have any future position in these sector(s)/stock(s)/issuer(s). Investors are requested to consult their financial, tax and other advisors before taking any investment decision(s).
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Stock(s) / Issuer(s)/ Sectors mentioned above are for illustration purpose and should not be construed as recommendation.
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