Aberdeen believes, given the inefficiency of markets, that strong long-term returns are achieved by identifying good quality stocks cheaply and holding for the long term. Sound fundamentals drive stock prices over time. We identify good companies from first-hand research, and add value from active management, which constitutes intensive and ongoing scrutiny at the company level, and not from portfolio trading.
We hold absolute return to be more important over the long term than index-relative. We do not see indices as providing meaningful guidance to the prospects of a company or its inherent worth. Neither market capitalization nor index membership is a guarantee of quality either. As such, we do not use indices as a starting point for building a portfolio, preferring to rely on common sense checks and the principles of diversification.
We are comfortable taking decisive bets against the benchmark, underpinned by convictions from proprietary analysis. We do not equate risk with divergence from benchmark, but with investing in companies that do not deliver.