Another reason for the change, Lemon said, was the “potential for exposure in emerging infrastructure markets” which was “very attractive on a risk-adjusted basis”. Cohen & Steers CEO, Robert Steers, says that listed infrastructure has the advantages of liquidity, transparent daily pricing, and diversification. Globally, Cohen & Steers had A$27.8 billion in assets under management in December 2009. Jacqui Lemon says “this is the first allocation that the van Eyk Blueprint Series has made to Cohen & Steers after their debut in the van Eyk Infrastructure Equities review in the first half of 2009.
Cohen & Steers made a product available to investors in the final quarter of 2009 which opened an opportunity for van Eyk to recommend allocations to the strategy.” Eu Joe Chan, van Eyk’s senior investment analyst, says listed infrastructure equities can be a good way for investors to remain leveraged to the upside in equity markets. “Equally positive is its ability to provide defensive qualities if the global economic recovery loses steam. The asset class has a distinct set of characteristics that differentiate them from traditional equity investments,” he says.
“Often, these assets have monopolistic characteristics which provide investors with pricing and revenue certainty as well as stable and predictable cash flows. The allocation to Cohen & Steers reflects van Eyk’s belief in the manager’s bottom-up stock research and top-down assessment of macro-economic indicators.” Ben Morton, Cohen & Steers’ senior investor, says C&S invests in listed infrastructure securities, not directly in projects [unlike a direct infrastructure manager which may invest directly in projects]. At any time, C&S’s portfolio is typically invested in between 65 and 85 listed infrastructure securities, each with several, if not dozens of assets [projects].