n Investment Analysts Journal - Fund size and returns on the JSE

Volume 2010, Issue 71
  • ISSN : 1029-3523
  • E-ISSN: 2077-0227
This article is unavailable for purchase outside of Africa



Market sentiment, the popular press and academia are divided on the question of whether the size of a fund affects its performance. This study examines the issue by constructing hypothetical portfolios of varying sizes, using historical data for each of the years 1991 to 2008. Each portfolio consisted of 40 randomly selected stocks, chosen from an investment universe of the top 160 JSE listed shares in terms of market capitalisation. Rules were applied to limit the concentration of any particular share and to ensure that trading volumes were practical. Simulation was then used to explore the boundaries of possible returns for each portfolio. The results of the simulation indicate that a fund's size is a contributing factor to its performance; liquidity being the underlying reason for this relationship. Performance was found to be affected for fund sizes greater than about R5bn. Large funds are increasingly forced towards market-cap weightings with a resulting concentration in resource stocks. The relevance of these findings to the South African fund management industry is that large funds should switch to passive investment strategies. Small to medium sized portfolio managers must be aware of the size effect and ensure that their funds are 'capped'.

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


Article metrics loading...


This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error