Another year has ended. So how did unit investment trust funds or UITF perform?
Indeed, the year 2020 is full of challenges. No doubt about that. Of course, as news from China of a mysterious illness that causes respiratory disease spread, the world had not prepared for what was to come. Then the pandemic ripped through nations, forcing governments to shut down economies. And with that came financial hardship. As a matter of fact, investors swiftly responded by going to securities of less risks.
UITF: The year 2020 in review
Out of 252 funds that posted returns, 96 of them or about 1 in 3 were in the red or remained unchanged.
And yet that’s not the whole story. As people learn to live with the new normal of physical distancing, face mask, face shield, frequent handwashing, and restricted travel, stocks of companies that found themselves benefiting from people who are working at home and searching for ways to acquire their needs online soared.
In fact, the bottom line of 156 funds or about 6 in 10 are green. Moreover, 32 of them which represent 12.70% of all the funds had double-digit growth.
|Total number of funds with returns||252|
Thus, for the figures and tables that follow, the data are sourced from UITF.PH. Returns posted are from December 27, 2019 to December 28, 2020. But the exceptions are nearly all of ATRAM funds whose NAVPU is updated as of December 23. Hence, they are indicated with an asterisk on their name.
Something have changed on how the ranking is done. Unlike last year’s article “Philippines’ best UITF in 2019“, all funds are included this time around. So that means you’ll see on the tables every fund in different currencies, invested in securities in other countries, and tracking foreign indices, including Asian indexes.
10 best performing UITF in the Philippines 2020
The UITFs that dominated the top 10 list are all equities funds and they posted gains in excess of 24%. In fact, all of them are invested in securities abroad. And nine out of the 10 are feeder funds.
The best performing UITF is ATRAM Global Consumer Trends Feeder Fund followed by ATRAM US Equity Opportunity Feeder Fund, BDO CHINA EQUITY FEEDER FUND, and Manulife Dragon Growth Equity Feeder Fund.
|Fund name||Currency||Type||1 Year Return %|
|ATRAM Global Consumer Trends Feeder Fund||Peso||Equity||72.18%|
|ATRAM US Equity Opportunity Feeder Fund||Dollar||Equity||41.63%|
|BDO CHINA EQUITY FEEDER FUND||Dollar||Equity||38.32%|
|Manulife Dragon Growth Equity Feeder Fund (USD Class A)||Dollar||Equity||34.30%|
|PRUInvest USD Global Technology Equity Feeder Fund (Class I)||Dollar||Equity||33.75%|
|ATRAM Global Technology Feeder Fund||Peso||Equity||33.62%|
|PRUInvest USD Global Technology Equity Feeder Fund (Class A)||Dollar||Equity||32.79%|
|BDO EUROPE EQUITY FEEDER FUND||Dollar||Equity||32.33%|
|Manulife Dragon Growth Equity Feeder Fund (PHP Unhedged Class A)||Peso||Equity||27.43%|
|Manulife Asia Best Select Equity Fund (USD Class I)||Dollar||Equity||25.13%|
10 best UITF equity index funds
Index funds are passively managed UITFs that try to portray the pricing movement of an entire market, specific industry, or particular asset type. Thus, their attractive feature is their relatively cheaper trust fees. The bargain, nonetheless, is that they are going to give an average return over time. And yet, index funds are prove to give superior returns in the long term.
This year’s top 10 equity index funds through UITF sees all classes of Security Bank’s Equity Index Feeder Funds topped the list. (Three classes A, B, F are defined for different target markets. Class F is for high-net worth individuals, B for institutional investors, and A for individuals.)
Lastly, out of 27 funds, nearly two out of three are in the red or have 0% return, 11 are gainers, and 8 are giving back double-digit ROI to investors. All of the funds are invested in foreign securities, and only one is in peso currency.
|Fund Name||Currency||1 year return|
|SB US EQUITY INDEX FEEDER FUND (Class F)||Dollar||17.78%|
|SB US EQUITY INDEX FEEDER FUND (Class B)||Dollar||17.78%|
|SB US EQUITY INDEX FEEDER FUND (Class A)||Dollar||17.55%|
|BPI US Equity Index Feeder Fund||Dollar||15.42%|
|BDO GLOBAL EQUITY INDEX FEEDER FUND||Dollar||14.90%|
|BDO GLOBAL EM EQUITY INDEX FEEDER FUND||Dollar||13.22%|
|SB GLOBAL EQUITY INDEX FEEDER FUND (Class F)||Dollar||12.80%|
|SB GLOBAL EQUITY INDEX FEEDER FUND (Class A)||Dollar||12.58%|
|BPI Invest US Equity Index Feeder Fund Class P (PHP Class)||Peso||9.54%|
|BDO JAPAN EQUITY INDEX FEEDER FUND||Yen||5.83%|
10 best UITF balanced funds
Balanced funds appeal to any investor open to moderate earnings. Their constituent assets (meaning, the securities that they are invested in) are a combination of equities and fixed income. Therefore, they are exposed to the aggressive earnings of stocks and the low-risk profile, modest return associated with fixed income assets.
ATRAM Global Allocation Feeder Fund* led the top 10 UITF balanced bonds. It is followed by ATRAM US Multi-Asset Income Feeder Fund (PHP Unit Class)* and Robinsons Bank Tax-Exempt Retirement Fund (A Balanced UITF).
Out of 31 funds, 18 posted a loss or 0% return, 13 were in the green, and only 1 had double-digit gains. Only one is in US dollars.
|Fund name||Currency||1 year return|
|ATRAM Global Allocation Feeder Fund*||Dollar||18.94%|
|ATRAM US Multi-Asset Income Feeder Fund (PHP Unit Class)*||Peso||8.92%|
|RBank Tax-Exempt Retirement Fund (A Balanced UITF)||Peso||6.34%|
|Sterling Balanced Fund||Peso||5.69%|
|UnionBank PHP Balanced Fund||Peso||5.55%|
|Odyssey Diversified Capital Fund||Peso||5.29%|
|BPI Bayanihan Balanced Fund||Peso||4.66%|
|CTBC Bank – ATRAM Philippine Balanced Feeder Fund||Peso||3.87%|
|Odyssey Diversified Balanced Fund||Peso||2.77%|
|RIZAL BALANCED FUND||Peso||1.60%|
10 best UITF bond funds
Bond funds are attractive to people who are risk-averse. Because their holdings are debts by the government or corporate entities, their income is earned through the interest that is paid out in fixed amount and regularly in periodic manner.
In 2020, UnionBank PHP Tax Exempt Fixed Income Fund on top of the best 10 UITF bond funds. Five others joined it in the round-up of funds that posted over 10% gains. Out of 65 funds in consideration, 57 gained and only 8 posted a loss or 0% return.
|Fund name||Currency||1 year return|
|UnionBank PHP Tax Exempt Fixed Income Fund||Peso||12.32%|
|SB PESO BOND FUND||Peso||11.58%|
|UnionBank PHP Fixed Income Fund||Peso||10.84%|
|RIZAL PESO BOND FUND||Peso||10.72%|
|ABF Philippines Bond Index Fund||Peso||10.59%|
|EastWest Peso Long Term Bond Fund||Peso||10.14%|
|Odyssey Peso Bond Fund||Peso||9.73%|
|ATRAM Total Return Peso Bond Fund||Peso||9.72%|
|BPI Fixed Income Portfolio Fund-of-Funds||Peso||9.54%|
|CHINA BANK FIXED INCOME FUND (formerly CBC GS FUND)||Peso||9.28%|
10 best UITF money market fund
Money market funds have the lowest risk profile of all the fund categories. They are mainly invested in short-term debt instruments with terms that are less than a year long. RIZAL PESO MONEY MARKET is the leader for this category, followed by UnionBank PHP Short Term Fixed Income Fund, CHINA BANK SHORT-TERM FUND, and Peso Money Market Fund.
|Fund name||Currency||1 year return|
|RIZAL PESO MONEY MARKET||Peso||3.78%|
|UnionBank PHP Short Term Fixed Income Fund||Peso||3.34%|
|CHINA BANK SHORT-TERM FUND||Peso||3.32%|
|Peso Money Market Fund||Peso||3.25%|
|East West Peso Short Term Fund||Peso||2.96%|
|UnionBank USD Short Term Fixed Income Fund||Dollar||2.87%|
|PRUInvest PHP Liquid Fund||Peso||2.84%|
|BDO SHORT TERM FUND||Peso||2.75%|
|BPI Money Market Fund||Peso||2.68%|
|SB PESO MONEY MARKET FUND||Peso||2.61%|
Interested in UITF but you don’t know how and where to begin? Don’t worry. You can hop on to and read the guide on investing in UITF.
Or maybe you’ve already heard about it but you haven’t started in UITF. Have you missed those funds that are featured here? You can actually reach out to the trust companies that offer them.