Allan Gray Balanced Fund Review 2022

Published by
Lethabo Ntsoane

Allan Gray Balanced Fund is a unit trust from Allan Gray Limited with over 500 million units. The Balanced Fund has over R135 billion in fund size making it the biggest fund from Allan Gray.


As of 2020, the net asset value per unit is R103. The Balanced Fund invests in a number of projects that produce favourable results continuously.

Investments from the Balanced Fund are in a mix of shares, bonds, property, commodities, and cash. The Fund is mostly invested in Equities taking a massive 68% of the fund.

Objectives of the Allan Gray Balanced Fund

The objective of the Allan Gray Balanced Fund is to buy shares at a discount aiming to achieve positive outcomes in the near future. Fund managers use research and expertise to inspect different companies to assess their intrinsic value.

Investments in these companies are for the long term. The focus is mainly on realising equity value increase in the future rather than at present.

This long term objective enables Fund managers and executors to buy shares that are looked down upon by the stock market.

This happens mostly because the short-term prospects show poor results at the time.

If the stock market doesn’t offer any attractive shares, the company looks at other better alternatives. The Fund also invests in bonds, property, commodities, and cash.

Allan Gray Balanced Fund Strategy

There is no fund that does well in the market like the Balanced Fund does, without a proper working strategy. The Balanced Fund has put up a rather not sophisticated strategy but one that works to achieve the fund’s objectives.


The balanced fund’s goals are to invest in shares of companies, commodities, bonds issued by companies and the government, and cash. By trying to invest in these categories, the fund splits its funding by doing the following:

  • investing a maximum of 30% of the fund offshore.
  • investing a maximum of 10% in Africa, except for South Africa.
  • Investing the rest of the funds in South Africa

Investments offshore are managed by Orbis Investments limited which is a partner of Allan Gray. Offshore investments are mostly in shares while the South African investments are held by JSE listed companies.

The maximum net equity exposure of the Fund is 75%. The Fund may use exchange-traded derivative (ETFs) contracts on stock market indices to reduce net equity exposure from time to time.

Investors suitable for the Allan Gray Balanced Fund

The Balanced Fund offers an investment opportunity that is long term. With this in mind, the Balanced Fund is suitable for individuals with the following goals.

  • Those seeking steady long-term capital growth.
  • Typically have an investment horizon of more than three years
  • Those that are comfortable with taking on some risk of market fluctuation and potential capital loss, but typically less than that of an equity fund.
  • Those who wish to invest in a unit trust that complies with retirement fund investment limits.

Getting started

Choosing the Balanced Fund as your investment of choice is the first step to investing at Allan Gray. The next crucial step that you have to take is to choose an account.

Yes, an account! Allan Gray offers seven accounts that one can choose from when investing in a unit trust. The choice is all yours. Your account choice will depend on the reason you are investing.

To get a much-needed clarity on accounts you need to talk to a consultant before making a choice. People invest in Allan Gray for a number of reasons and some of the reasons include retirement, living income, and savings on taxation.

A specialist consultant that comes for free will find a better account solution for you. Let’s now have an overview of each account that Allan Gray has on offer.

Basic Unit Trust Investment Account

This account offers flexibility and lets you have access to your money as and when you need it. The account is suitable for any goal that one can have hence you can invest for retirement or save for a vacation using this account.

The minimum investment for this account is R20,000.00. If you want to invest more money you can do so. If you are not able to pay R20,000.00 as a single lump sum, you can pay an amount of R500 per month.

Tax-free savings account

An Allan Gray Balance fund’s tax-free savings account is an account that doesn’t require you to pay any taxes from your earnings. There is a special condition though. For an account to qualify as a tax-free account, annual deposits must not be more than R36,000.00, and lifetime deposits must not exceed R500,000.00.

Like the basic unit trust, you need a minimum of R20,000.00 to start with your investment or you can invest R500 per month.

Retirement Annuity Account

This account is for those who want to take advantage of the tax exclusions that a retirement annuity offers. You will need to invest a minimum of R20,000.00 as a lump sum payment or R500 per month.

Offshore Investment Account

This account is for those who want to diversify their portfolio across different economies. To start with your investment you will need to deposit a lump sum of R20,000.00 or $1500. Alternatively, you can deposit a sum equivalent to $1500 in pounds, yen, or Euros.

Endowment Account

This account is for those whose marginal tax rate is higher than 30% and need an account that offers estate planning benefits and tax efficiency. You can invest a lump sum of R20,000.00 or R500 per month.

Preservation fund Account

This account is for those who want to preserve and grow their existing retirement savings until they are ready to retire and need to start drawing an income. A preservation fund will require you to invest a lump sum of R50,000.00 or more.

Living annuity

This account is for those who need to start drawing an income from their retirement savings. The minimum investment on a living annuity account is R100,000.00 as a lump sum payment.

Know your fees

With the Allan Gray Balanced Fund, there are fees that you need to pay. These fees are unavoidable. The Balanced Fund’s expenses, including the investment management fee, are deducted before performance figures are calculated.


So you will incur these fees before everything else. You will need to pay a 1.2% investment management fee, 0.03% in administration cost, and 0.11% in VAT. Your table fees will be approximately 1.43%.


The Allan Gray Balanced Fund offers a number of opportunities to grow your money and to invest responsibly. The Fund allows you to invest your money on a pool that regularly out beats the market, in the process providing sustainable growth.

Allan Gray Balanced Fund Review 2022
Lethabo Ntsoane

Lethabo Ntsoane holds a Bachelors Degree in Accounting from the University of South Africa. He is a Financial Product commentator at Rateweb. He is an expect financial product analyst with years of experience in reviewing products and offering commentary. Lethabo majors in financial news, reviews and financial tips. He can be contacted at

Published by
Lethabo Ntsoane
Tags: Allan Gray