Australian Equity Fund

Seeking high-quality opportunities in Australian companies with positive structural industry dynamics, strong competitive positions and which can sustainably grow at attractive rates of return.


3YR Return Annualised (Net)
(View Total Returns)

Total Assets


1YR Return (Net)
(View Total Returns)

Manager Tenure


Information Ratio
(5 Years)

Tracking Error
(5 Years)


Inception Date 26-Apr-2012

Performance figures calculated in AUD

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30-Sep-2020 - Randal Jenneke, Head of Australian Equities,
We are entering a challenging period for markets in coming months, with the U.S. election, fiscal cliffs, risks of a second wave in coronavirus infections, and ongoing China tensions likely to weigh on sentiment. Countering these risks, it is highly likely that greater monetary and fiscal support will be forthcoming if necessary. It is shaping up as another tug of war between liquidity and fundamentals. To date, liquidity has been the winner.
Randal S. Jenneke
Randal S. Jenneke, Portfolio Manager

Randal Jenneke is a portfolio manager and head of Australian equities. He is a vice president of T. Rowe Price Group, Inc. 



Investment Objective

The Fund's investment objective is long-term capital appreciation through investment primarily in a portfolio of securities of Australian companies listed on the S&P/ASX200 Accumulation Index (ASX200). The portfolio will include the securities of a broad range of companies across the market capitalisation. Additionally the portfolio may contain investments in the Securities of companies outside of the ASX200 including certain New Zealand and ASX dual listed companies.

Investment Approach

  • Our investment approach focuses on bottom-up company fundamentals but recognizes that sector and industry analysis are also critical to understanding growth drivers. The portfolio manager ultimately seeks to construct a growth-oriented portfolio of stocks, ranging across all market capitalization segments and maintaining sector diversification.
  • One of the core tenets of our investment philosophy is that quality growth stocks are frequently mispriced. Our long-term investment approach provides us with the opportunity to take advantage of near-term trends that can often be overemphasized by the market and our competitors.
  • We implement fundamental analysis to identify companies with positive structural industry dynamics, strong competitive positions and those that we believe can grow sustainably at attractive rates of return. In seeking out these higher-quality businesses, we focus on industry attractiveness, competitive advantage, management quality, free cash flow, return on capital and financing/balance sheet structure.
  • Our global research platform enables us to access and use information from local and global perspectives, generating unique insights. The fund comprises some of the highest-conviction ideas from our research platform, as well as the insights of our global sector and regional equity portfolios. We expect these businesses to compound value faster than the overall market and outperform over time, focusing on opportunities where our fundamental views differ from market expectations.
  • We assess valuations relative to other local market opportunities, seeking high-growth companies with attractive valuations relative to their long-term intrinsic value.
  • Systematic and integrated risk management are hallmarks of our investment process.

Portfolio Construction

  • The portfolio may contain investments in the securities of companies outside of the ASX200 including certain New Zealand and ASX dual listed companies.
  • Typically 30-50 holdings, ranging across all market capitalization segments
  • Individual positions range from +/- 5% relative to benchmark
  • Expected Tracking Error: typically 3.0 to 6.0% over rolling three-year period
  • Cash target range: Cash Reserves are typically less than 5% but will not exceed 10% of the Fund's total market value
  • Turnover range: 30 – 50% per annum

Performance - Net of Fees 

Annualised Performance

  1 YR 3 YR
5 YR
Since Inception
Since Manager Inception
Fund % -7.07% 4.74% 8.07% 8.48% 8.48%
Benchmark % -10.21% 4.80% 7.31% 8.00% 8.00%
Excess Return % 3.14% -0.06% 0.76% 0.48% 0.48%

Inception Date 26-Apr-2012

Manager Inception Date 26-Apr-2012

Benchmark: S&P/ASX 200 Index

Data as of  30-Sep-2020

Performance figures calculated in AUD

  1 YR 3 YR
5 YR
Since Inception
Fund % -7.07% 4.74% 8.07% 8.48%
Benchmark % -10.21% 4.80% 7.31% 8.00%
Excess Return % 3.14% -0.06% 0.76% 0.48%

Inception Date 26-Apr-2012

Benchmark: S&P/ASX 200 Index

Data as of  30-Sep-2020

Performance figures calculated in AUD

Recent Performance

  Month to DateData as of 23-Oct-2020 Quarter to DateData as of 23-Oct-2020 Year to DateData as of 23-Oct-2020 1 MonthData as of 30-Sep-2020 3 MonthsData as of 30-Sep-2020
Fund % 5.27% 5.27% -5.68% -2.46% 0.95%
Benchmark % 6.05% 6.05% -5.42% -3.66% -0.44%
Excess Return % -0.78% -0.78% -0.26% 1.20% 1.39%

Inception Date 26-Apr-2012

Benchmark: S&P/ASX 200 Index

Benchmark: S&P/ASX 200 Index

Performance figures calculated in AUD

Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future performance.

Source for performance: T Rowe Price. Net of fees performance is based on end of month redemption prices after the deduction of fees and expenses and the reinvestment of all distributions. Figures include changes in principal value. Investment return and principal value will vary, and an account may be worth more or less at termination than at inception.

Daily performance (MTD, QTD, and YTD) data is based on the latest available NAV minus one business day.

Returns for time periods greater than one year are annualised.

30-Sep-2020 - Randal Jenneke, Head of Australian Equities,
Australian equities sold off in September and modestly underperformed global peers. This was the first monthly decline since the savage sell-off in March. Market news continued to be dominated by developments around COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, but this time with positive developments domestically. With the risk of a second wave of COVID-19 cases spreading to states beyond Victoria having receded, the prospects for domestic economic recovery have increased. To further assist the flow of credit to the economy, the Federal Treasurer announced the government’s intention to repeal responsible lending laws. The Government and the Reserve Bank of Australia are seemingly adopting a “whatever it takes” strategy to both the economic recovery and reducing the unemployment rate. Within the portfolio, performance benefitted from a number of holdings including oOh!media, Adbri, and James Hardie. Outdoor advertising company oOh!media continued to rebound from its August lows as better management of COVID-19 led to a further re-opening of the domestic economy and an expectation of an improvement in revenue to follow.


Largest Holding CSL 10.19% Was (30-Jun-2020) 10.01%
Other View Full Holdings Quarterly data as of 30-Sep-2020
Top 10 Holdings 54.42% View Top 10 Holdings Monthly data as of 30-Sep-2020

Largest Top Contributor^

Aristocrat Leisure
By 0.24%
% of fund 4.38%

Largest Top Detractor^

By -2.67%
% of fund 8.76%


Quarterly Data as of 30-Sep-2020

Top Purchase

James Hardie Industries (N)
Was (30-Jun-2020) 0.00%

Top Sale

Was (30-Jun-2020) 5.09%

Quarterly Data as of 30-Sep-2020

30-Jun-2020 - Randal Jenneke, Head of Australian Equities,

In the portfolio, we remain focused on the high-growth quality end of the market. Having begun the process in the previous quarter, we continued to reduce exposure to the housing market in the U.S. Despite some better-than-expected data showing the U.S. housing market is showing resilience, we believe the trajectory of U.S. virus infections, uncertainty surrounding future lockdowns, and the unknown timeline of household-targeted stimulus require caution toward the sustainability of housing construction. We also increased our exposure to companies that we expect to benefit from the downturn. We raised exposure to health care and reduced our weighting in materials.

As a result of these shifts, as of the end of June 2020, our largest relative sector overweight positions were in consumer discretionary, health care, IT, and utilities. Our key underweights were financials, real estate, and industrials and business services.

Overall, we maintain a significant overweight position in high-quality growth companies and remain cautious on the prospects of a strong cyclical economic recovery.

Health Care

The most significant recent change to our sector positioning has been an increase in our exposure to health care, following the recent underperformance of the sector as the market rotated into value cyclicals. This created a good opportunity to add to existing positions and significantly increase our sector exposure. As the coronavirus pandemic took hold, we began to rebuild our exposure to the sector. We initiated a position in Ramsay Health Care (RHC) and further increased the extent of our position in biotechnology concern CSL.

  • RHC is a global hospital group that operates hospitals and day surgery centres, treatment facilities, and rehabilitation and�psychiatric units. We initiated a position on valuation grounds amid earlier-than-expected resumption of elective procedures in Australia following agreements with the public sector in response to the health�crisis.
  • CSL company specialises in plasma. There has been increased demand for its products amid the pandemic. Longer term, the company is, in our view, a very high-quality business that compounds value over time, is exposed to a growing industry that should give it topline growth, has great scale benefits, and has a good management team.


The portfolio was overweight the materials sector at the start of the review period and had a modest underweight position by the end of the quarter. Following strong outperformance, we took profits on our iron ore names and scaled back our weighting to materials as a result. We reduced the size of our holdings in Rio Tinto, BHP Billiton, and Fortescue Metals Group.

We shifted some of the proceeds of these sales to other areas within the materials sector. For example, we continued to add to our position in Amcor. This is one of the world's largest packaging companies and focuses on plastics packaging, with key exposures to food, beverage, and medical and personal care. It is a defensive growth compounder that is emerging from a difficult 24 months, with limited downside and potential for significant upside. We think a shift to home consumption and a greater focus on hygiene is likely to be a positive for packaged goods demand.

Toward the end of the first quarter of 2020, we began reducing our exposure to the housing markets, and in the most recent quarter, we continued this process by eliminating the remainder of our position in James Hardie, the building materials specialist providing fibre cement cladding.

Consumer Discretionary

We remain overweight consumer discretionary, and we further raised the extent of our position over the quarter. We made a number of switches to our positions within the sector, taking advantage of price weakness to buy in to quality names where we felt sentiment had become overly pessimistic as well as seeking out companies that are able to operate successfully in the downturn. At the same time, we have reduced or eliminated positions where we felt fundamentals had deteriorated and/or where valuations had become stretched. For example, we initiated a position in Crown Resorts, continued to build our exposure to IDP Education, and eliminated the holding in A. P. Eagers.

  • We believe Crown Resorts is the highest-quality casino operator in Australia from a balance sheet perspective. We took advantage of weakness in the share price to add to Crown and believe its valuation, which is below its historic trading range, will normalise as the economy reopens.
  • IDP Education is a market leader in international student placements and English language testing. In the first quarter of 2020, we saw an opportunity to gain exposure to a quality, global leader in this field, and in the most recent quarter, we continued to build the position. We believe the company will likely continue to benefit from strong secular tailwinds once coronavirus concerns dissipate.
  • A. P. Eagers is Australia's leading automotive retail group. We eliminated our position in the stock following a strong rally in the share price since the lows the stock hit in March 2020. We see limited near-term sustained recovery as, in our view, the economic implications will have a prolonged impact on�volumes from higher unemployment and tightened credit availability.

Industrials and Business Services

The portfolio retained an overall significant underweight position in industrials and business services. However, we switched some of our holdings, initiating a position in Sydney Airport and funding this through the elimination of Transurban.

  • Sydney Airport is a high-quality asset, given its monopoly position, light-handed aeronautical regulatory framework (pricing based on negotiation with airlines, rather than set by a regulator as is the case for many global airports), and unregulated non-aeronautical commercial revenues. While travel remains heavily restricted, we believe valuation provides an opportunity to acquire a quality asset that offers strong upside potential as travel restrictions loosen over time.
  • Transurban is an owner, operator, and developer of toll roads. As one of Australia's most indebted companies, we believe an unprecedented shock to traffic will see the company experience balance sheet pressure that ultimately could impact the company's ability to retain near-term dividends.


Financials remains one of our most significant underweight positions; however, we did raise our exposure over the quarter, initiating QBE Insurance and switching our ANZ exposure to National Australia Bank (NAB).

  • We identified what we believe to be a compelling valuation opportunity within the insurance space. We took advantage of share price weakness to add to QBE Insurance, which we believe offers attractive cash generation, improving pricing momentum and efficiency improvements.
  • We bought a new position in NAB as we believe economic challenges warrant higher-quality exposure in the banking sector. We view NAB's comparative capital position favourably following its more conservative provisioning earlier in the year.
  • We funded the position in NAB through selling out of our position in ANZ. We view the latter as having a higher risk profile versus its peers, given its lower quality underwriting standards. With the expectation that loan losses will increase as the longer-term impact of the virus is realized, we opted for higher quality exposure via NAB.

Consumer Staples

Within consumers staples, we reduced the exposure to Woolworths, moving from an overweight to underweight position in the name. The stock performed well during the lockdown period as people were told to "stay at home" and there was an increased demand for groceries. However, the stock had fulfilled its role as a defensive play in a challenging environment and we saw more compelling opportunities elsewhere.


Largest Sector Materials 21.97% Was (31-Aug-2020) 22.57%
Other View complete Sector Diversification

Monthly Data as of 30-Sep-2020

Benchmark: S&P/ASX 200 Index

Top Contributor^

Consumer Discretionary
Net Contribution 1.42%
Selection 0.61%

Top Detractor^

Consumer Staples
Net Contribution -0.91%


Quarterly Data as of 30-Sep-2020

Largest Overweight

Consumer Discretionary
Fund 18.38%
Benchmark 7.55%

Largest Underweight

Fund 15.94%
Benchmark 25.86%

Monthly Data as of 30-Sep-2020

30-Sep-2020 - Randal Jenneke, Head of Australian Equities,
Overall, we maintain a significant overweight position in high-quality growth companies, which we expect will outperform as the economic recovery starts to take hold. The heightened market volatility has created a good opportunity to add to our existing positions across the portfolio. In September, for example, we initiated a position in an owner, operator, and developer of toll roads. The company suffered during COVID-19 as a highly levered exposure to mobility. From here, we expect road traffic to continue to recover as economies re-open and Transurban should be a beneficiary of this trend.


Largest Country Australia 88.78% Was (31-Aug-2020) 85.53%
Other View complete Country Diversification

Monthly Data as of 30-Sep-2020

Benchmark: S&P/ASX 200 Index

Largest Overweight

United Kingdom
Fund 3.89%
Benchmark 0.97%

Largest Underweight

Fund 88.78%
Benchmark 96.33%

Monthly Data as of 30-Sep-2020

Team (As of 01-Oct-2020)

Randal S. Jenneke

Randal Jenneke is a portfolio manager and head of Australian equities. He is a vice president of T. Rowe Price Group, Inc. 

Mr. Jenneke has 28 years of investment experience, nine of which have been with T. Rowe Price. Prior to joining the firm in 2010, he was a senior portfolio manager of Australian equities at Schroder Investment Management.

Mr. Jenneke earned a B.Ec. in accounting and finance from Macquarie University and a graduate diploma in applied finance and investment from the Securities Institute of Australia.

  • Fund manager
  • Years at
    T. Rowe Price
  • Years investment


APIR Minimum Initial Investment (AUD) Minimum Subsequent Investment (AUD) Buy / Sell Spread Management Fees
ETL0328AU $500,000 $100,000 Buy +0.10%/ Sell -0.05% 0.60% pa


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GIPS® Information

T. Rowe Price ("TRP") claims compliance with the Global Investment Performance Standards (GIPS®). TRP has been independently verified for the twenty one- year period ended June 30, 2017 by KPMG LLP. The verification report is available upon request. Verification assesses whether (1) the firm has complied with all the composite construction requirements of the GIPS standards on a firm-wide basis and (2) the firm's policies and procedures are designed to calculate and present performance in compliance with the GIPS standards. Verification does not ensure the accuracy of any specific composite presentation.

TRP is a U.S. investment management firm with various investment advisers registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, the U.K. Financial Conduct Authority, and other regulatory bodies in various countries and holds itself out as such to potential clients for GIPS purposes. TRP further defines itself under GIPS as a discretionary investment manager providing services primarily to institutional clients with regard to various mandates, which include U.S, international, and global strategies but excluding the services of the Private Asset Management group.

A complete list and description of all of the Firm's composites and/or a presentation that adheres to the GIPS® standards are available upon request. Additional information regarding the firm's policies and procedures for calculating and reporting performance results is available upon request

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