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Staying on track for the good life; YOUR MONEY.

YOU could soar into profit by investing in a tracker fund PEP - first made popular last year by Virgin boss Richard Branson.

Instead of relying on fund managers to pick share winners, trackers simply mirror what is happening right across the stock market.

This means they are cheap to run and simple to understand.

Because of the wide spread of investments and the quality of the companies involved - such as M&S and BT - the funds are less prone to dramatic share price ups and downs.

And last year they outperformed 90 per cent of UK unit trust funds being managed by so-called "experts".

Virgin's tracker PEP, which celebrated its first anniversary last Sunday, has no upfront fee and an annual charge of just one per cent.

That compares to initial charges of up to six per cent and annual fees of around 1.5 per cent on some general PEPs.


In January this year, Fidelity - the world's biggest fund manager with pounds 270billion under man-agement - and finance giants Legal & General threw the market into turmoil when they undercut Virgin's annual fee by 0.5 per cent.

Other PEP providers look sure to follow suit. Last month, insurer Direct Line joined the fray. Its new tracker fund charges the same as Virgin, but gets cheaper with time.

After five years the annual fee drops to 0.75 per cent, and after 10 years to just 0.5 per cent.

The PEP price war means that less of your money goes in fees and more is invested.

But beware. Of the 11 tracker funds on the market, Lloyds, Mid-land and Morgan Grenfell are still expensive.
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Copyright 1996 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:Features
Author:Boliver, Diane
Publication:Sunday Mirror (London, England)
Date:Mar 10, 1996
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