Weiss Korea Opportunity Fund has published results for 2021 that show the trust’s NAV falling far less than its benchmark – the trust’s NAV total return was -1.4%, which compares to -6.1% for the MSCI Korea 25/50 Net Total Return Index. In addition, the shares moved from trading at a discount of 2.8% to a premium of 2.8%. A dividend of 5.2311p per share was declared.
The underlying average discount that the portfolio’s preference shares trade on relative to equivalent ordinary shares widened to 52.2% from 49.0% as the manager took profits on positions trading on narrow discounts and recycled the proceeds. Capturing narrowing discounts added 8.3% to returns in 2021 and, as preference shares tend to trade on higher yields than equivalent ordinary shares, the extra income added 2.0% to returns.
The manager notes that investor activism in Korea increased during 2021. There were 26 Korean companies subject to activist demands during the year, which included demands for increased dividend payouts and changes to board composition.
WKOF : Weiss Korea holds up relatively well in falling market