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The precious metals manager who returned more than 100% in 2017

The precious metals manager who returned more than 100% in 2017

Commodities specialist Tobias Tretter has blown away his nearest rivals in the gold and precious metals sector with a return 130 percentage points beyond that of his average peer over the past year.

Tretter returned 139% on the Commodity Capital – Global Mining fund between December 2016 and December 2017, while the average of the 84 active managers returned 9.37% in US dollar terms.

The starkness of his outperformance is further evidenced by the fact that his nearest rival – Stefan Breitner, who runs the DJE – Gold & Resources fund – returned 21.9% over the same timeframe.

Citywire AAA-rated Tretter has overseen the Luxembourg-domiciled fund since its launch in January 2010 and operates with a relatively wide remit. In this fund, he can target the whole bastion of commodities companies, despite the name seemingly limiting him to gold miners.

Fund data from mid-2017 gives a snapshot of how diverse he is, with 54% allocated to gold, 36.9% invested more broadly in other metals and 9% in base metals.

Speaking to Citywire Selector in September last year, Tretter explained that he had moved gold up to around 70%, but was finding interesting opportunities in more niche pockets of the market, notably lithium. He said this could see huge growth in the coming years thanks to its integral role in electric vehicle production.

On that theme, Tretter has also seen positivity from his early adoption of exposure to cobalt. Tretter said the limited pool of cobalt stocks has become increasingly important due to the metal's battery charging capabilities.

Tretter, who was formerly with German group DJE, reduced gold to 68% at the start of the year, while lithium now accounts for 10.7%. Base metals are up to 13.6%. At a country level, Tretter has 45% in North America and his single biggest stock bet is Iamgold Corp, which makes up 6.45% of the fund.

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