The ICICI Prudential Long Term Equity Scheme seeks long-term capital appreciation by investing approximately 90 per cent of the investments in equity instruments, while the balance 10 per cent would be a parked in debt and money market instrument and cash ( Including-money at call).
This fund has outpaced its benchmark over not one but three different market cycles; it has beaten its benchmark in 13 of the last 15 years. A rare ELSS fund that focuses on the value style of investing, it has managed a four- or five-star rating pretty consistently since 2011.
The fund’s valuation-focused style has helped it regain its four-star rating recently after a blip to three stars for a brief period. The portfolio is constructed around stocks and sectors with cheaper valuation that nevertheless goes with reasonable growth expectations.
Typically 55-65 per cent of its portfolio is allocated to large caps, 20-30 per cent to mid caps and 10-15 per cent to small caps. In the last one year, mid-cap allocations have been raised from 25 to 40 per cent, with small-cap weights trimmed.
ICICI Prudential Long Term Equity Fund is a rare ELSS fund that has managed to stay one step ahead of the benchmark on a trailing one-, three-, five- and ten-year basis, while also beating the category over these periods. The fund’s investment strategy typically delivers outsized returns in the beginning stages of a bull market when sector rotation is in vogue. It trails when markets are overheated. It also works well in containing losses when bears are in control. The value style of stock-picking has suffered setbacks in the last five years but seems to be back on the saddle in the last one year or so.
Overall, with the market tide turning currently, this fund is a good option to get in on trends ahead of the stampeding herd.