Legg Mason fund added to BT platforms

Global asset manager Legg Mason has announced that one of its funds has been added to BT Wrap and BT Super Wrap.

The Legg Mason Martin Currie Equity Income Trust was launched in 2011 and invests in about 50 ASX-listed companies, according to a statement by the company.

The fund aims to provide a growing income stream, inflation protection from increasing dividends and tax effectiveness through maximising franking benefits.

"A significant feature of the fund is its 'fifth distribution' that re-invests annual capital gains back into the fund to further grow the capital base and generate more income over time, an unusual feature in the Australian market," the company said.

In the year to January 2016, the fund delivered an income return of 7.3 per cent before fees and a total net return of 1.3 per cent after fees. Martin Currie Australia, a Legg Mason affiliate, manages the fund.

Reece Birtles, Martin Currie's chief investment officer, said: "We built the fund to address retiree longevity risk and help avoid the need to draw down on capital through retirement."

"We believe that a well-diversified portfolio of quality companies that can grow their dividends best meets this objective, without the need for costly protective overlays which can potentially impact returns and duplicate the diversification benefits from other asset classes."

Legg Mason Australia head of sales Beau Titchkosky said: "We are seeing stronger government support and increased demand for attractive income sources with sensible risk management and we believe the Lonsec 'Highly Recommended' rating is solid endorsement of our capabilities in this space."

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