The BlackRock Latin American Trust seeks long-term capital growth and an attractive total return primarily through investing in quoted Latin American Securities. The trust was launched in 1990 and management as transferred to BlackRock on 31 March 2006 following a tender process. The manager follows a mainly bottom-up approach that is flexible but seeks growth at a reasonable price. The trust has an indefinite life subject to a biannual continuation vote. The benchmark is the MSCI Emerging Markets Latin America index.
BlackRock Latin American Investment Trust (BRLA) has been managed by Sam Vecht and Ed Kuczma since late December 2018. They have created a more concentrated portfolio comprising their highest-conviction ideas in the region. The managers are employing gearing in a more tactical way, which they report has proved successful in both up and down markets, and they have been more active in adding to and trimming positions when deemed appropriate. As a result of the changes made, BRLA now has higher stock-specific risk, but lower country and sector risk. The managers say the success of the strategy was evidenced in the trust’s strong relative performance in Q419. They are constructive on the prospects for Latin America in 2020 based on an expectation of higher economic growth, low interest rates and the potential for a weaker US dollar.