BLACKROCK FRONTIERS INVESTMENT TRUST PLC
All information is at 31 October 2013 and unaudited.
Performance of portfolio at month end with net income reinvested
One Three Six One Since
month months months year launch*
Share price 3.6% 3.2% 11.1% 47.5% 24.1%
Net asset value 2.6% -1.7% 9.8% 32.9% 19.0%
MSCI Frontiers Index (NR) 3.3% -2.3% 4.6% 26.0% 5.7%
MSCI EM Markets (NR) 5.7% 3.6% -2.0% 6.8% -2.7%
Net asset value 1.9% 4.3% 13.5% 32.7% 22.8%
MSCI Frontiers Index (NR) 2.5% 3.6% 8.0% 25.6% 8.9%
MSCI EM Markets (NR) 4.9% 9.8% 1.2% 6.5% 0.2%
Sources: BlackRock and Standard & Poor's Micropal
* 17 December 2010.
At month end
Net asset value - capital only: 172.19c
Net asset value - cum income: 172.70c
Net asset value - capital only: 107.10p
Net asset value - cum income: 107.42p
Share price: 114.00p
Total assets (including income): £161.8m
Premium to cum-income NAV: 6.1%
Gearing range (as a % of gross assets): 0-20%
Net yield*: 4.5%
Ordinary shares in issue: 150,621,621
*Yield calculations are based on dividends announced in the last 12 months as
at the date of the release of this announcement, including the 2012 final
dividend per share of 2.60 cents per share (1.64557 pence per share) announced
on 30 November 2012, the 2013 interim dividend of 2.00 cents per share and the
special interim dividend of 3.40 cents per share announced on 30 May 2013,
payable to shareholders on 5 July 2013. The interim and special dividends
announced on 30 May 2013 that total 5.40 cents per share (3.45003 pence per
share) are the total dividends for the financial year ending 30 September 2013.
The special dividend represents the final dividend which is normally paid in
March each year. Therefore, a more accurate indication of the annual yield for
the year to 30 October 2013 would be 3.0% (based on the latest available
share price as at the date of this announcement of 114.00 pence per share). The
Board does not currently anticipate any further distributions for the current
Sector Analysis Gross assets(%)* Country Analysis Gross assets(%)*
Financials 32.7 United Arab Emirates 11.7
Consumer Staples 14.2 Saudi Arabia 11.5
Energy 13.8 Qatar 10.5
Health Care 9.9 Nigeria 10.2
Telecommunication 9.2 Bangladesh 6.5
Industrials 8.6 Kazakhstan 5.7
Materials 7.8 Iraq 5.5
Consumer Discretionary 2.3 Kuwait 5.1
Utilities 1.9 Pakistan 4.2
----- Ukraine 3.9
Total 100.4 Sri Lanka 3.8
----- Oman 3.4
Short positions -1.6 Vietnam 3.3
===== Turkmenistan 3.0
Pan Africa 2.2
Short positions -1.6
*reflects gross market exposure from contracts for difference (CFDs)
30.11 31.12 31.01 28.02 31.03 30.04 31.05 30.06 31.07 31.08 30.09
2012 2012 2013 2013 2013 2013 2013 2013 2013 2013 2013
% % % % % % % % % % %
Long 102.0 103.4 105.1 104.1 99.5 99.2 99.8 95.9 103.2 98.9 98.8
Short 4.9 5.2 3.5 1.2 1.2 1.2 1.1 2.5 3.0 3.3 1.4
Gross 106.9 108.6 108.6 105.3 100.7 100.4 100.9 98.4 106.2 102.2 100.2
Net 97.1 98.2 101.6 102.9 98.3 98.0 98.7 93.4 100.2 95.6 97.4
Ten Largest Equity Investments
Company Country of Risk % of gross
Zenith Bank Nigeria 4.8%
Emaar Properties United Arab Emirates 4.2%
Doha Bank Qatar 3.9%
Saudi Basic Industries Saudi Arabia 3.6%
Halyk Bank Kazakhstan 3.4%
Abdullah Al-Othaim Markets Saudi Arabia 3.1%
Square Pharmaceuticals Bangladesh 3.1%
Dragon Oil Turkmenistan 3.0%
Qatar Gas Transportation Qatar 3.0%
Qatar National Bank Qatar 2.9%
Commenting on the markets, Sam Vecht, representing the Investment Manager
The MSCI Frontier Market Index returned 2.5% in October. Frontier Markets
underperformed mainstream Emerging Markets which rose 4.9% triggered by the
delay of the US Federal Reserve tapering of its Quantitative Easing Program.
We maintain the contention that Quantitative Easing does little to address
Emerging Markets economic imbalance and that Frontier Countries generally
remain better positioned. Year to date Frontier Markets have risen 21.1%
whereas Emerging Markets have only risen 0.3%. (All calculations on a US Dollar
basis with net income reinvested.)
Argentina continued its strong run in 2013, rising by 7.9% in October.
Investors began to countenance the possibility of political change in the 2015
elections following a weak showing from the government in the recent mid-term
elections. The optimism extends to the likelihood of Argentina beginning
market friendly reforms, fuelled by speculation that the government is planning
to unfreeze tariffs in the heavily regulated utilities sector.
Pakistan also performed well in October, rising by 5.7%. The government has
met the majority of the conditions put in place by the IMF and so expect the
next tranche of funding to be released before year end. In addition, positive
negotiations with other multilateral organisations seem likely to result in
Pakistan receiving the funding required to prevent a crisis in its precarious
Balance of Payments situation.
Nigeria was a strong performer, rising by 4.9%, as the stresses seen in the
financial system normalised.
Croatia was the weakest performer over the month, falling by 5.0%. Sentiment
remained impacted by the downgrade to junk of the country's sovereign debt by
rating agency, Fitch.
The Company's NAV per share increased by 1.9% in October, underperforming the
benchmark by 0.6%. Year to date, the Company's NAV has returned 27.2% compared
to the MSCI Frontier Markets Index return of 21.1%(all calculations on a US
Dollar Basis with net income reinvested).
The Company benefitted from a position in Iraqi focussed oil producer, DNO.
Investors were encouraged by excellent results from the Tawke oilfield in the
Kurdistan region of Iraq. We have recently exited the position given that the
stock has risen 70% year to date in USD. However, it was not all good news for
positions with Iraqi oil exposure. The positive relative performance of DNO was
largely offset by Gulf Keystone. The company has experienced a delay in moving
its listing to the main board of the FTSE which has concerned investors.
Cable & Wireless, the telecom company with operations in Panama and across the
Caribbean was also a notable outperformer. Investors were cheered by the
continued turnaround as highlighted by the recent results. In addition, the
company announced that it will spend $100m of the cash raised from recent asset
consolidation on extending their licence in Panama. This helped to reduce
investor fears that the company would look to aggressively spend its cash pile
without sufficient concern for valuation.
Kyrgyzstan miner, Centerra was the largest individual detractor from
performance over the month as the Kyrgyz government announced that it was
looking to renegotiate the terms of the company's mining licence.
The Company increased exposure to Pakistan over the month, the Company
initiating a new position in Fertiliser company, Engro. We expect to report
improved financial results based on improved gas allocation from government
over the next few quarters, which should help to somewhat ease the pressure
that it is facing from a large debt burden.
We also added a new position in Genel Energy, another Iraqi focused oil
company, following an insightful trip to the region. The company has
attractive assets which appear undervalued as the likelihood of exports from
the region increases.
We exited our position in Saudi Telecom, Etihad Etisalat, following a period of
strong performance. The most recent results showed that data growth has slowed
dramatically leading us to believe that the company is fully valued at current
Markets are likely to remain turbulent over the next few months as the
Quantitative Easing debate continues across the world. In this environment,
Frontier Markets remain better positioned and are therefore likely to
experience lower volatility than their Emerging Market counterparts. Due to
the strong outperformance of Frontier Markets over Emerging Markets year to
date, Frontier Markets may well underperform a strong year-end rally in
Emerging Markets. However, we believe that Frontier Market valuations remain
attractive both in absolute terms and relative to mainstream Emerging Markets.
Companies operating very profitably in Sub-Saharan Africa, Asia and the Middle
East offer exposure to some of the fastest growing markets globally yet are
often trading on valuations of under 10 times the price to earnings ratio
supported by high dividend yields.
More than 2 billion people live in Frontier Markets but until now they have
attracted little investor attention. With their strong GDP growth, positive
demographic profile, low debt burden and relatively low correlation to
developed and emerging markets, we think Frontier Markets are a great place to
invest for those who have both a long term horizon and wish to see capital and
income growth. In a changing world, we believe that opportunities abound for
21 November 2013
Latest information is available by typing www.blackrock.co.uk/brfi on the
internet, "BLRKINDEX" on Reuters, "BLRK" on Bloomberg or "8800" on Topic 3 (ICV
terminal). Neither the contents of the Manager's website nor the contents of
any website accessible from hyperlinks on the Manager's website (or any other
website) is incorporated into, or forms part of, this announcement.
-0- Nov/21/2013 15:06 GMT
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