The original basis for launching unit trusts was to provide regular savers with access to the JSE. Realistically, investors who can afford to save only R50 or R100 a month will never be able to build up a diversified share portfolio.

What we call a general equity fund was simply known as a mutual fund or unit trust. In the UK, the majority of unit trust assets are still invested in equities. But in SA, the industry has increasingly become the domain of multi-asset funds, designed primarily for retirement savings and for drawdown during retirement.

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