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About this investment trust

The Company aims to provide an attractive and growing level of income  return with capital appreciation over the long term, predominantly  through investment in a diversified portfolio of primarily large-cap US  equities.

Capital at risk. The value of investments and the income from them can fall as well as rise and are not guaranteed. Investors may not get back the amount originally invested.

Why choose it?

Persistent low interest rates have made it a challenge for investors to find consistent sources of income. The Trust’s managers select high quality, income generative companies from across the world's largest and most liquid stock market. In a lower growth world, the Trust aims to uncover dynamic companies with the power to compound growth over many years.

Suited to…

Investors looking for a carefully selected, actively managed portfolio of high-quality US businesses, designed to deliver long-term income and capital growth.

What are the risks?

  • Capital at risk. The value of investments and the income from them can fall as well as rise and are not guaranteed. Investors may not get back the amount originally invested.
  • Overseas investment will be affected by movements in currency exchange rates.
  • Net Asset Value (NAV) performance is not the same as share price performance, and shareholders may realise returns that are lower or higher than NAV performance.
  • Investment strategies, such as borrowing, used by the Trust can result in even larger losses suffered when the value of the underlying investments fall.
  • The Trust may use derivatives to aim to generate more income. This may reduce the potential for capital growth.
  • Investors in this Trust should understand that capital growth is not a priority and values may fluctuate and the level of income may vary from time to time and is not guaranteed.
  • The Trust uses derivatives as part of its investment strategy. Compared to a fund which only invests in traditional instruments such as stocks and bonds, derivatives are potentially subject to a higher level of risk.

Useful information

Fees & Charges

Annual Expenses as at Date: 31/10/2019

Ongoing Charge (including any Performance Fee): 1.09%

Important Notice: Key Investor Document (KID) – Other Ongoing Costs disclosure error
During the period 5th March 2021 – 6th April 2021, the figure for “Other ongoing costs” included within the “Composition of costs” section of the KID was incorrectly stated as 1.08%. The correct figure should have been 1.18%. This has now been updated in the revised KID that was published on 7 April 2021. The “Total costs” figure included in the KID, together with the stated “Impact on return (RIY) per year”, were correct throughout the period.

Please accept our apologies for the error. You are not required to take any action as a result of this statement. If you have any queries regarding the above, please contact our Investor Services Team by email at Alternatively, please feel free to contact us by telephone on 0800 44 55 22, quoting the relevant account number. Our lines are open from 8.30am to 6.00pm, Monday to Friday. For your protection, telephone calls may be recorded.

Management Fee Summary: BlackRock receives an annual management fee of 0.75% of the Company's net assets.

  • ISIN: GB00B7W0XJ61

    Sedol: B7W0XJ6

    Bloomberg: BRNA LN

    Reuters: BRNA.L

    LSE code: BRNA

  • Name of Company: BlackRock Fund Managers Limited

    Telephone: 020 7743 3000



    Correspondence Address: Investor Services,

    BlackRock Investment Management (UK) Limited,

    12 Throgmorton Avenue,


    EC2N 2DL

    Name of Registrar: Computershare PLC

    Registered Office: 12 Throgmorton Avenue


    EC2N 2DL

    Registrar Telephone: +44 (0)370 873 5879

    Place of Registration: England

    Registered Number: 8196493

  • Year End: 31 October

    Results Announced: June (interim), February (final)

    AGM: March

    Dividends Paid: Quarterly ( April, July, October & January)

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Fund manager commentary

30 April 2021

Please note that the commentary below includes historic information on the Company’s NAV performance data, index and share price performance, and also the portfolio’s options exposure and the delta of the options.

The figures shown relate to past performance. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of current or future results.

For the one-month period ended 30 April 2021, the Company’s NAV increased by 3.5% and the share price by 5.0% (all in sterling). The Company’s benchmark, the Russell 1000 Value Index, returned +3.6%1 for the period.

The largest contributor to relative performance was investment decisions in financials. Notably, stock selection and an overweight exposure to the insurance industry proved beneficial, as did stock selection in the capital markets and banks industries. In information technology, a meaningful underweight exposure to the semiconductors and semiconductor equipment industry boosted relative returns. Finally, stock selection in health care contributed to relative results during the period.

The largest detractor from relative performance was the portfolio’s underweight exposure (0% allocation) to the real estate sector, which is based on our view that valuations are unattractive at current levels. In communication services, an underweight exposure to the interactive media and services industry weighed on relative returns, as did stock selection in diversified telecom services. Other detractors during the period included stock selection in the consumer discretionary and consumer staples sectors.

The portfolio’s option overwriting strategy detracted from relative performance during the month, as did the portfolio’s cash position, amid rising U.S. stock prices.


Transactions: In April, the portfolio initiated new positions in The Southern Company, Fidelity National Information Services, Intercontinental Exchange and First Citizens BancShares. Conversely, we exited our positions in PPL and Ferguson, as well as reduced our exposure to Charles Schwab and Pioneer Natural Resources.

Options: As of 30 April 2021, the Company’s options exposure was 18.6% and the delta of the options was 83.9.


As of the period end, the Company’s largest overweight positions relative to the benchmark were in the financials, health care and energy sectors. The Company’s largest underweight positions relative to the benchmark were in the industrials, real estate and communication services sectors.

Source: Unless otherwise stated all data is sourced from BlackRock as at 30 April 2021.

Source: 1Datastream as at 30 April 2021.

Any opinions or forecasts represent an assessment of the market environment at a specific time and is not intended to be a forecast of future events or a guarantee of future results. This information should not be relied upon by the reader as research, investment advice or a recommendation.

Reference to individual investments mentioned in this communication is for illustrative purposes only and should not be construed as investment advice or investment recommendation. This should not be construed as investment advice or investment recommendation of those companies.

Portfolio manager biographies

Tony DeSpirito is Co-Manager of the BlackRock North American Income Trust plc. He is Head of the US Income & Value team and Director of Investments, US Equities within the Fundamental Active Equity business of BlackRock's Active Equity Group. Mr. DeSpirito is the lead Portfolio Manager for the BlackRock Equity Dividend portfolios. Prior to joining BlackRock in 2014, Mr. DeSpirito worked at Pzena Investment Management, where he served as Managing Principal, portfolio manager, and a member of the firm's Executive Committee. Mr.DeSpirito was responsible for a suite of large-cap value, all-cap value and two hedge fund portfolios. Having managed value equity assets since 1996, Mr. DeSpirito served as a portfolio manager for the John Hancock Classic Value, PACE Large Company Value, and Vanguard Windsor funds. Mr. DeSpirito earned a BS degree in economics with concentration in finance, summa cum laude, from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania in 1990, and a JD degree, magna cum laude, from Harvard Law School in 1993.

David Zhao is Co-Manager of the BlackRock North American Income Trust plc. He is Co-Director of Research for the US Income & Value team within the Fundamental Active Equity business of BlackRock's Active Equities Group. Mr. Zhao is a Portfolio Manager for the BlackRock Equity Dividend portfolios.Prior to joining BlackRock, David was a Global Equity Senior Research Analyst and Principal at Pzena Investment Management covering technology, US banks/brokers, medical technology, non-life insurance, financial technology and select industrials. David began his career as an Analyst at Lehman Brothers covering technology M&A; and later within the Institutional Equities Corporate Strategy Group.David holds a BA of Arts with degrees in Economics and Computer Information Systems and graduated Cum Laude from Northwestern University.

Lisa Yang is Co-Manager of the BlackRock North American Income Trust plc. She is a member of the Fundamental Equities division of BlackRock’s Portfolio Management Group. Ms. Yang is a Research Analyst for the US Income & Value Pillar and she is responsible for coverage of the consumer staples sector. Prior to joining BlackRock, Lisa served as an Equity Research Associate at Wellington Management in Boston where she covered Utilities and Telecoms. Lisa earned a BA degree in Economics and Math from Wellesley College and an MBA degree from Wharton.

Franco Tapia has resigned from BlackRock and consequently ceased to be a co-portfolio manager of BlackRock North American Income Trust plc on 7 June.

Tony DeSpirito profile photo
Tony DeSpirito
Portfolio Manager
david zhao headshot
David Zhao
Portfolio Manager
Lisa yang headshot
Lisa Yang
Portfolio Manager

Board of directors

All the Directors are non-executive and independent of the Investment Manager. The Board as a whole constitutes the Audit and Management Engagement Committee..

Simon Miller (Chairman)  (date of appointment 7 September 2012) is Chairman of Brewin Dolphin Holdings PLC and a Non-Executive Director of STV Group plc. He was previously Chairman of JPMorgan Global Convertibles Income Fund Limited, Artemis Alpha Trust plc, JPMorgan Elect plc and Amati VCT plc.

Christopher Casey  (Chair of the Audit and Management Engagement Committee) (date of appointment 7 September 2012) was previously a partner of KPMG LLP and its predecessor firms from 1992, having joined Peat Marwick & Mitchell in 1977. He is also a Director of TR European Growth Trust PLC, Eddie Stobart Logistics Plc, CQS Natural Resources Growth and Income Fund plc, Mobius Investment Trust plc and Life Settlement Assets..

Andrew Irvine  (date of appointment 7 September 2012) is non-executive chairman of Jones Lang LaSalle Scotland and has over 30 years’ experience in the field of property development and investment. He is also chairman of Fidelity Special Values PLC and was previously chairman of Montanaro European Smaller Companies PLC. He is past chairman of Celtic Rugby and the British and Irish Lions Limited and a past president of the Scottish Rugby Union.

Alice Ryder  (date of appointment 12 June 2013) is a partner of Stanhope Capital LLP and has more than 25 years’ investment experience, comprising the last thirteen years as an investment consultant in the charity sector and as a fund manager from 1985 to 2002. She is a member of the Chartered Institute for Securities and Investment. She is responsible for advising substantial charity and not for profit clients at Stanhope Consulting, a division of Stanhope Capital LLP. She is also a director of JPMorgan Smaller Companies Investment Trust plc.

Melanie Roberts  (date of appointment 1 October 2019) is a partner at Sarasin & Partners LLP. She has over 20 years of investment experience and joined Sarasin & Partners in 2011 where she is primarily responsible for the management of charity and pension fund portfolios. Prior to joining Sarasin & Partners, she spent 16 years at Newton Investment Management as a fund manager of charity, private client and pension fund portfolios.

Investment strategies targeting growth and income
Investment strategies targeting growth and income
Over 25 years of proven experience running investment trusts
Over 27 years of proven experience running investment trusts. (December 2019)
Unparalleled research capabilities
Unparalleled research capabilities and experienced stock pickers
To get in touch contact us on:
Telephone: 020 7743 3000

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