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Podcast: Hear from funds expert Mark Dampier

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Mark may initially have been strong-armed into the world of finance (and away from his career as a ski instructor) by a prospective father-in-law, but he’s learned a thing or two in his 32 years in the business.

He knows what he likes to see in someone managing his investments: He wants a clear philosophy, articulated in under five minutes and he wants to see a decent track record across an economic cycle (roughly seven years in his book); He’s looking for someone with skill, rather than just luck.

Rather shockingly, he tells us that he thinks only 10% of funds out there are any good. He gives his all-time top five fund managers as:

1 – Neil Woodford –  Woodford Investment Management

2 – Angus Tulloch – Steward Investors

3 – Luke Kerr – Old Mutual Global Investors

4 – Giles Hargreave – Hargreave Hale

5 – Richard Pease – Crux Asset Management

We put Mark on the spot and ask him which one investment he’d look to if he got a windfall of £10,000 to invest – he picks RIT Capital Partners.

He believes the single most important thing anyone can do is get saving. If they’re investing monthly, they don’t even need to worry about the level of the stock market, he says, because it evens out over time. If they’re baffled, he encourages people to get gemmed up using the information on the Internet – they need to do the basics themselves.

The next 12 months hold a few worries for him – the EU referendum, the US election – but there’s always a reason not to invest, he says, and people need to make like Nike and ‘Just Do It’. (But then they might have to be a little bit patient afterwards).

Finally, he tells us he’s a black lab man, doesn’t like cats (outrageous), gets called sexist by Holly (not because of that) and admits to liking Strictly Come Dancing. Who knew!?

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