19th December: Neil Woodford
Neil adopted the same philosophy and long-term approach for the CF Woodford Equity Income fund that had underpinned his 30-year plus career. He invests in a company only when he is convinced of the compelling long-term opportunity but he also considers how the global economy influences the stocks he owns and the ones that he doesn’t.
He shares Warren Buffett’s view that if you aren’t willing to hold a stock for 10 years then you probably shouldn’t even think of owning it for 10 minutes. When he invests in a business he does not expect to ever sell it. Clearly there will be opportunities, or on occasions he will be forced, to sell, but his discipline is to focus on the long term.
When Woodford launched the fund it set out to challenge industry ‘norms’ – low-cost transparent fee structures (the fund’s AMC and TER are one and the same) and openness regarding portfolio holdings with full disclosure of the entire portfolio and regular updates each month. Investor engagement via the website has played a key role in investor interaction and Woodford now has more than 24,200 twitter followers.