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  • Writer's pictureAlpesh Patel

Navigating Investment Decisions: Beyond the Limitations of Fund Managers

When it comes to building a robust investment portfolio, entrusting your capital entirely to fund managers can sometimes be restrictive due to their inherent limitations and potential conflicts of interest. Avoid relying solely on fund managers to make investment decisions, as they may have limitations and conflicts of interest. Here are five crucial steps you can take to ensure your investment decisions are both sound and profitable:

Step 1: Embrace Global Diversification

Limiting your investments to a single geographic region, such as only investing in UK stocks or Japanese equities, restricts the range of opportunities available to you. This geographic confinement can hinder performance, especially when certain regions face economic downturns. To build a resilient portfolio, consider a globally diversified approach. This allows you to tap into a broader spectrum of economic activities and innovations, potentially stabilising your returns across different market cycles.

Step 2: Adopt a Multi-Style Investment Approach

Many investors fall into the trap of adhering to a single investment style, such as focusing solely on growth or value stocks. This narrow focus can cause you to overlook critical aspects such as valuation discrepancies, cash flow dynamics, and market momentum—all of which can significantly influence future stock performance. By employing a more flexible investment strategy that incorporates multiple styles, you can more effectively capture market nuances and enhance your portfolio's potential.

Step 3: Look Beyond Current Themes

While it's tempting to chase the latest investment fads, such as cryptocurrencies or AI-driven companies, doing so can severely limit your investment scope to a small pool of options. These trendy areas might not necessarily align with sound investment principles or sustained growth. Instead, prioritise companies with solid fundamentals, strong earnings prospects, and robust growth trajectories, regardless of their thematic label. This method focuses on quality and sustainability, rather than fleeting popularity.

Step 4: Manage Capital Allocation Wisely

Fund managers often control vast sums of money, which can restrict their ability to make significant investments in smaller or emerging companies. This can dilute the impact of individual investments on overall portfolio performance. As an individual investor, you have the advantage of flexibility. Allocating a thoughtful portion of your capital to carefully selected stocks allows you to achieve meaningful impact and potentially higher returns from your investments.

Step 5: Strategise for Market Downturns

Finally, be cognisant of the inherent conflicts of interest that may affect fund managers, particularly during market downturns. Managers might be reluctant to convert holdings to cash, potentially exacerbating losses. As an independent investor, you have the agility to quickly adapt your strategy, including holding cash or seeking safer investment havens during volatile periods. This proactive approach to market downturns can preserve your capital and provide opportunities to buy at lower prices.


Navigating the investment landscape requires more than just outsourcing decisions to fund managers. By understanding and overcoming the inherent limitations in traditional fund management, you can take control of your investment destiny. Stay informed, stay flexible, and always be prepared to adjust your strategies in response to changing market conditions.

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Alpesh Patel OBE


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