Closed-ended funds investing in UK smaller companies dominated performance tables in April, with BlackRock, Henderson and Standard Life all winners during the month.
Premier Fund Managers' £95m Acorn Income fund topped the chart, up by 10% in NAV terms, followed by Gresham House Strategic (+9.8%), according to figures from QuotedData.
The £580m BlackRock Smaller Companies, £560m Henderson Smaller Companies and £290m Standard Life UK Smaller Companies trusts were also up between 6% and 7% for the month.
QuotedData head of research James Carthew said: "The sector has been somewhat out of favour following Brexit and such companies have been left behind in previous cyclical rallies.
"However, in April they had a better month and the best performers table on a NAV basis is dominated by UK small companies trusts. Acorn Income fund did particularly well thanks to its use of leverage.
"Technically, it is a split capital fund as it uses its zero dividend preference shares to create gearing, and consequently a higher level of income, to its ordinary shares."
Meanwhile, investment trusts exposed to resources were hit on the back of weak commodity prices.
The worst performer in NAV terms was uranium specialist Geiger Counter, down 21%, followed by Golden Prospect Precious Metals (-14%) and City Natural Resources (-10%).
Geiger Counter and Golden Prospect also suffered in share price terms, falling 12% and 5.5% respectively. Both funds have announced their hopes to issue subscription shares.
But at the bottom of the table was Ranger Direct Lending, with its share price down 18% over April. According to QuotedData, this was due to an issue with borrowers.
Fellow debt fund SQN Asset Finance Income also fell by 9% in share price terms because one of its borrowers failed to make an interest payment on time.
However, the best performing fund in share price terms was technology investment specialist FastForward Innovations, which rose by 43.5% in April. It also saw its premium escalate from 10% as at 31 March to 65% at 30 April, having made a large disposal.
This was followed by a number of other AIM-listed trusts including EPE Special Opportunities (+22%) and Globalworth Real Estate (+20%), both up in share price terms.
The only new launch in April was the £69m EJF Investments, while Aberdeen's Diversified Income & Growth trust grew by £75m after the rollover from Aberdeen UK Tracker.
Funding Circle SME Income raised £142m in a C share issue, while Scottish Mortgage continued to expand, having raised almost £34m from tap issues.
The £200m Schroder Asian Total Return Investment Company and Nick Train's £1bn Finsbury Growth & Income trust both issued shares worth at least £5m during April.
Meanwhile, BH Macro saw the most money returned for the month (£319m), with almost half its shareholders making for the exit following a tender offer.
Alliance Trust, which recently bought back a near 20% stake held by activist investor Elliott, is also shrinking although QuotedData added "the pace of selling appears to be slowing".
The sector also said goodbye to the London & St Lawrence trust, which delisted on 20 April after being placed into members' voluntary liquidation, with shareholders choosing between a cash exit or rolling funds into a similar open-ended vehicle.
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