The AIC: City of London most viewed trust as investors eye income

Seven of the 20 most-viewed trusts on the AIC website in 2023 were UK Equity Income-focused

Photo by Frans Ruiter on Unsplash


City of London was named the most viewed investment trust for the second year running as income-focused trusts captured investors’ attention in 2023.

Twelve of the 20 most viewed trusts on the Association of Investment Companies (AIC) website were income-focused last year, with seven of those from the UK Equity Income sector.

Managed by Job Curtis since 1991, the £2bn City of London investment trust has the longest track record of yearly dividend increases having done so for the last 57 years.

The trust delivered a share price total return of 1.4% over 2023 and currently yields 5%.

Meanwhile, the £2.2bn JPMorgan Global Growth & Income was the second most viewed company and the best performer in the AIC Global Equity Income sector, posting a return of 19.4% over the last 12 months. The trust merged with Scottish Investment Trust in September 2022.

2023 rank2022 rankTrust nameAIC sectorShare price total return %Yield%
1 yr5 yrs10 yrs
1 =1City of London Investment TrustUK Equity Income

2 ↑6JPMorgan Global Growth & IncomeGlobal Equity Income19.39103.15261.533.71
3 ↓2Scottish Mortgage Investment TrustGlobal

4 ↓3Merchants TrustUK Equity Income0.5054.9482.564.98
5 ↓4Murray International TrustGlobal Equity Income-2.2431.1794.154.55
6 ↑14Alliance TrustGlobal16.7971.40204.272.28
7 ↓5F&C Investment TrustGlobal3.8053.72195.331.43
8 =8Henderson Far East IncomeAsia Pacific Equity Income-17.14-7.5236.9911.52
9 ↑10Scottish AmericanGlobal Equity Income4.7867.00180.082.64
10 ↓7Bankers Investment TrustGlobal

Source: AIC/Morningstar

Annabel Brodie-Smith, communications director of the AIC, said: “With persistent inflation and an economic slowdown, it’s understandable that investment trusts with long track records of dividend growth were most popular with investors last year.

“Investment trusts have strong income benefits which can help them continue to pay dividends to investors even during tough times. However, it’s important to remember that dividends are never guaranteed.”

Dividend heroes

Baillie Gifford’s flagship trust, Scottish Mortgage, again received significant attention, with the global equity investment company the most viewed non-income trust. The FTSE 100 constituent has consistently increased its dividend for 41 years, and delivered a return of 5.1% over the last 12 months and 299.8% over the past ten years.

Dividend heroes, which are trusts that have increased dividend payouts consistently for at least 20 years, were in focus in 2023. Alongside City of London and Scottish Mortgage, both Merchants Trust and Bankers Investment Trust ranked highly for clicks.

Bankers has increased payouts consistently for 56 years, while Merchants has for 41.

Completing the top five most viewed, Murray International Trust yielded 4.6% in 2023 though its share price total return was down 2.2%. Manager Bruce Stout is set to retire in June 2024.

See also: Momentum: Seven risks for investors to watch for in 2024

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