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Review summary

TAM Asset Management

TAM Asset Management manages assets for private clients, insurance companies, pension schemes, trust companies, charities and other financial institutions.

From their head office in London and their international office in Mauritius, TAM offers the flexibility of both onshore and offshore investment management.

This international arm is regulated by the Financial Services Commission of Mauritius, not the Financial Conduct Authority of the UK specifically, which may add to risk for end clients given the less secure reputation of Mauritius as a jurisdiction - although TAM does not profess to give direct advice.

Customer Reviews
Expert Verdict

TAM delivers a variety of different services for advisers to offer their clients - from a range of ethical, social, environmental, sustainable (ESES) and Sharia-compliant portfolios, to a range of tailored and low-cost model portfolios - all of which are expertly run by a team of investment and operational specialists with a combined experience of over 100 years in the industry.  They say they are dedicated to making professionally managed and completely transparent investment solutions accessible to all.

TAM creates and manages discretionary portfolios based on advisers’ assessments of end client needs.

Assets are custodied in with Pershing Securities Limited, a part of Bank of New York Mellon.

TAM’s discretionary investment philosophy, apparently based around ‘being fair to the client’, is focussed on growing clients’ wealth “through investing in asset classes that we expect to appreciate and withdrawing from those we expect to decline”. TAM does not believe in maintaining asset allocation throughout, instead seeking to guess the future.

All portfolios are built on a multi-manager basis potentially tapping into different specialisms if you buy into the theory that active management is likely to beat the market (which we do not).


The Pros

> Strong brand
> Traditional approach to beating markets
> Secure

The Cons

> Expensive way to invest
> Active methodology is academically questionable
> Pays retrocession commission to your adviser which can create conflict
What is TAM Asset Management's performance track record?

Performance from TAM has been impressive, particularly in recent times with difficult market conditions to work in.

The outperformance is down to the success of their tactical short and medium-term calls.  This is what you pay an active manager to do, and when it works everything is great.

However, empirical evidence is overwhelmingly stacked against anyone being able to do this consistently, and it wouldn’t take many incorrect calls for performance to suffer. 

What are TAM's fees and charges?

The level of charges can differ depending on the portfolio service selected. Key charges are as follows:

Portfolio service = TAM Premier

Minimum investment amount = £100,000   

TAM annual management charge = 0.75% + VAT

Platform fee = 0.25%

Portfolio service = TAM Focus

Minimum investment amount = £7,500 - £100,000

TAM annual management charge = 0.25% + VAT

Platform fee = 0.25%

Portfolio service = TAM Ethical 

Minimum investment amount = £10,000

TAM annual management charge = 0.40% + VAT

Platform fee = 0.25%

Portfolio service = TAM Sharia

Minimum investment amount = £10,000

TAM annual management charge = 0.75% + VAT

Platform fee = 0.25%

Additional fees – Advisers may take an introducers fee of up to 5% of the initial investment, which will be agreed in advance. You may also be paying them and annual fee.  Administration fees will also apply.

What is TAM's investment process?

Step 1:

Investment Objective Review & Objective Setting

The key to TAM's investment process is ensuring that, from the outset, every client has a realistic idea as to what they can expect from TAM. Therefore, before signing up to their services you must ensure that you have established an accurate investment objective with your intermediary. This will form the cornerstone of how TAM manages your assets.

Investment horizons can change however, and they will be affected by your personal circumstances. TAM recommends that, if your goals or circumstance change, you inform your financial adviser immediately and re-evaluate your portfolio to ensure it is balanced and in line with these changes. 

As each investor's objective and risk profile may change according to circumstances, TAM also recommend that these are re-evaluated continually. 

Step 2:

Investment Strategy Formulation

Once TAM has  been informed of a client's investment objective, they will propose an investment strategy that is most aligned with those requirements and objectives. Their investment strategy will include both asset and security selection proposals.

Step 3:

Asset Allocation

TAM says asset allocation is a medium to long-term process designed to capture more macro-economic determined events through investing in asset classes that they expect to appreciate and withdrawing from those they expect to decline.

For example, investing in equities in 2007 (and not bonds) would have been beneficial, as opposed to 2008 when an emphasis on bond investment (and not equities) would have proved a more successful strategy.

In other words, they try and guess and time the market...

TAM says they attempt to ensure that the asset allocation of the portfolio between the various asset classes (shares, bonds and cash, etc.) is continually managed according to the changing economic cycles and financial markets. However, this process is always managed in accordance with the investment mandate and corresponding risk profile. During certain phases of the economic cycle, asset allocation is the most effective method of maintaining the performance of portfolios - allegedly, according to TAM.  Of course, we beg to differ!

Step 4:

Fund and Security Selection

TAM admits: "It is obvious that no single Investment Company or Portfolio Manager can be a top performer in respect of every geographic region or different type of asset class."

To try and get around this they  consider a multi-manager approach to any investment portfolio and choose specialist managers for differing investment disciplines. 

They prefer to diversify amongst known specialists with proven track records. Where appropriate, they may also hold discrete investments in individual securities, if both the portfolio type and risk profile warrant it. 

They say the advantage of this diversified approach is that portfolios will be exposed to the investment styles, strategies and positioning of different, often top, investment specialists. This reduces the risk profile of an investment portfolio, in TAM's opinion, as, should one investment house misread the market, it has less chance of having a negative effect on the entire portfolio.

Of course, you could ditch the entire active management/crystal ball appraoch entirely - but then, TAM wouldn't be the right DFM for you!

Step 5:

Performance Monitoring and Review

Each portfolio is individually benchmarked in accordance with risk profiling and is monitored and reviewed by the Investment Team at TAM on an on-going basis. Each individual Fund investment is also checked for any style shift within the strategy employed to ensure that the continued management is in line with our expectations. 

TAM says it continually monitor for any deviation from performance expectation against peer group and within strategy to ensure, as far as possible, that the underlying Managers do not take actions that may impinge upon their ability to generate on-going satisfactory returns.

A more formal review is also regularly undertaken by our Investment Team...

I've seen the light!

I knew nothing about investing - and was totally bamboozled with the extraordinary claims TAM make about how their approach can basically beat the market and even provide a safe haven in a storm. What a load of flannel. It's just guff. I've seen the light - and it's NOT active fund management - stick to ETFs - low cost, clever, evidence based returns. Happy to say my TAM days are history!

Expert Assessment of TAM Asset Management

Whilst TAM Asset Management is an award winning reputable business, and they provide a range of international actively managed DFM solutions, we believe that there are far better and much more cost-effective alternatives for the discerning investor!

If you already have a portfolio with TAM and it is worth £50,000 or more, we recommend you get a X-Ray Review™ conducted to give you the information you need to make a decision on the best way forward.

TAM Asset Management Brochure

TAM Asset Management Ethical Investing Brochure

TAM Asset Management UK Terms of Business

TAM Asset Management Fund Example - Balanced Portfolio

TAM Asset Management Fund Example - Balanced Ethical

TAM Asset Management Awards

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