Simon Read: Who'll be the next big thing chosen by Neil Woodford?

Along with other journalists, I had dinner with the legendary fund manager Neil Woodford this week. A very personable man, he's launching his own fund management house next month and has spent the past couple of weeks touring the country visiting financial advisers and others to spread the word.

The first fund he'll launch is an equity income fund, the sector in which he made his fame when in charge of the Invesco Perpetual High Income fund. Anyone who backed Mr Woodford with £1,000 when he started out 26 years ago would be sitting on more than £25,000 today.

So it's no wonder that his new venture is expected to attract a massive amount of private investor cash. Should you sign up? That's up to you, but he does have a compelling argument with his devotion to "long-term investment decisions".

On Thursday he criticised firms that take profits too quickly: "Many fund managers don't have an investment horizon beyond the end of their nose."

He remains consistent to his traditional philosophy: "It doesn't have to be new, but there are plenty of new opportunities to look at." It will be interesting to see which new opportunities he alights upon in the coming months.

s.read@independent.co.uk

Twitter: @simonnread

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