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BlackRock Greater Europe Trust versus Baillie Gifford European Growth Trust

03 September 2021, Trustnet, Eve Maddock-Jones

European stocks have soared in 2021 so far on the back of the global value rotation, but for investors looking to buy into the market, there is a difficult choice to make between a new hotshot and an established performer.

Returns have been encouraging in the year so far for those brave enough to buy Europe. Comparing the performance of the AIC’s regional sectors, IT Europe has been the fourth best so far this year, beaten only by its value focused cousin the IT UK All Companies sector and the UK and IT European Smaller Companies sectors.

BlackRock Greater Europe Trust and Baillie Gifford European Growth Trust have been standouts, not just this year, but over several years. Both have a growth style but implement it in different ways, but which is better?

Managers of the Baillie Gifford European Growth Trust Moritz Sitte, Stephen Paice and Chris Davies follow the fund house’s well-known style of long-term investment in ‘exceptional’ growth companies.

This was a major shift away from the value focus the trust had under previous managers Edinburgh Partners.

Ewan Lovett-Taylor, head of investment companies research at Numis Securities, said that Baillie Gifford’s take-over of the trust in 2019 meanwhile saw all but one company sold in the transition.

BlackRock Greater Europe Trust has a more differentiated approach, with FE fundinfo Alpha Manager Stefan Gries and co-manager Samuel Vecht including exposure to the emerging European market.

James Carthew, head of investment companies at QuotedData, said that comparing the two funds revealed how two different styles, but that both managers can still produce “quite similar results”.

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