Jason Rolf - Business Development ManagerJason started his working career on the London International Financial Futures Exchange in 1987, trading interest-rate options for an LSE options market-maker. He became an independent trader shortly after and then founding partner of a large independent options-trading group. During this time he co-founded London Derivatives Options Software Ltd, a software firm that produced one of the first commercially available option pricing models in London. This business ultimately became the foundation of the software firm, FFastfill plc which floated on the AIM market in 2000. Jason's work on option-pricing and trade-execution algorithms for electronic trading introduced him to the field of systematic models where he has concentrated since 2005. He joined Amati as a partner at the end of 2010. He is a current holder of the CFA Investment Management Certificate (IMC). In 2014 Jason served as a director of the London media technology business Mirriad Ltd, an Amati VCT investee company.
The AIC: VCT 20th Anniversary Sees Dividends at an All-Time High
Posted by Jason Rolf on 20/Apr/2015
The Association of Investment Companies (AIC) announces another strong year for VCTs and a record high for dividends since they were introduced exactly 20 years ago.
With this month marking the 20th anniversary since Venture Capital Trusts (VCTs) were created, figures from the Association of Investment Companies (AIC) show that the level of aggregate dividends is at its highest annual level since VCTs were established.
The VCT sector paid out aggregate dividends of £240.3m over the year to 31 March 2015, compared to £231.1m over the year to 31 March 2014.
The average VCT is currently paying an average yield of 8.2%, with the average generalist VCT yielding 8.8% and the average AIM VCT yielding 5.6%.
The level of aggregate dividends continued to be dominated by generalist VCTs focused on private equity and development capital due to:
- A larger amount of funds being managed by the sector ("asset base") from which dividends are being paid
- An increase in the number of VCTs seeking to pay annual dividends of circa 5p per share
- A number of VCTs paying "special dividends" (returning realised investment gains) to shareholders
The amount of dividends paid by the AIM focused VCT sector in the year to 31 March 2015 (at £21.7m) is comparable with the year to 31 March 2014 (at £22.7m), when taking into account that there is a reduced number of AIM focused VCTs in existence at 31 March 2015 compared with at 31 March 2014.
Ian Sayers, Chief Executive, AIC, said: "It's been a good year for the VCT sector, with strong fundraising for the 2014/15 tax year and funds under management at a record high. As the sector has matured, it is encouraging to see so many VCTs offering consistent and attractive yields. The companies VCTs invest in start small, and as such are high risk, but the tax advantages on offer can be appealing for investors willing to accept the risks. The increase in average dividends paid is one of many reasons why income hungry investors might want to consider VCTs as part of a balanced portfolio."