Irish pension managed funds continued their good work of late by delivering further positive returns during the month of February. But which fund managers are providing the best returns over different time periods?

Use our interactive graph below to compare performances.


The average growth across the industry was 2.7% for the month with Setanta Asset Management having the best return at 3.6% and Merrion Investment Managers propping up the bottom at 1.9% of the table.

This is all good news for those who held their nerve after their funds suffered heavy losses in 2009 and it shows the importance of taking a long term view on pensions and all investments for that matter.

Many people on the advice of some decided to switch to cash funds when the worst of the falls had already happened and they continue to sit in these cash funds making a return of next to nothing, especially when inflation is taken into account.

It shows the value of constant reviews with your financial advisor to make sure you are in a position to benefit from any possible upturns. Many of these managed funds have now largely recovered from these losses and are back in positive territory.

If you look at the 10 year returns from the graph above it shows average growth of 5.9% over the 10 year period. If you compare it with deposit rates being offered by the banks it is clear that pensions offer a very healthy alternative and that is even before the tax relief is taken into consideration.

Fund manager birds of a feather flocking together?

Notwithstanding the clear differentials in the performances in the graph above, when the same data is grouped over the last ten years it shows both a consistent and recent upward trajectory (see graph below).

It also shows a remarkable convergence in funds performance across different managers over the longer term. This underlines the need for expert financial advice when choosing a pension provider as short term outlier performances can be misleading. There are also many other considerations including appetite for risk and management fees which need to be analysed.

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