Sunday 8 September 2019 6:21 pm

Woodford crisis wipes £36m off Kent County Council’s stake in flagship fund

Kent County Council has seen £36m wiped off the value of its investment in Neil Woodford’s Equity Income Fund (EIF) since its suspension, new figures have shown.

The beleaguered stockpicker’s flagship fund suspended withdrawals on 3 June after becoming overwhelmed by investors demanding their money back.

An official disclosure, first reported in the Sunday Telegraph, showed that the council’s holding had shrunk to £224m by the end of June, down from £263m three months earlier.

Kent Council’s pension fund had been a key investor in the Equity Income Fund, but attempted to withdraw its money in May after becoming concerned by some of Woodford’s practices.

The fund was unable to fulfill the council’s request, and suspended trading the following month. Link, which is managing the suspension, has said it plans to keep the fund gated until December while it attempts to shed its unquoted assets.

Kent Council intends to fully redeem its stake in the fund once it reopens, according to its annual report.

Discussion of the holding was on the agenda for a meeting of the council’s Superannuation Fund Committee on Friday, but the details of the discussion are not available to the public.