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Shocking fall in industry engagement and the rest of the week’s IFA news

Shocking fall in industry engagement
Chief Executive of Fairstone Lee Hartley

Here’s your Friday IFA news round-up, what you need to know from the industry and the investment communities that’s happened this week. Read this when you have a few minutes to spare and you’ll be up to speed on almost everything.

Shocking fall in industry engagement

A new survey reveals a “shocking” fall in industry engagement.

The main finding is that over the past seven years there has been a worrying fall in those using the services of a financial adviser and of those surveyed, 28% said they did not know who they would be likely to use for pension advice.

This trend extended to those reviewing the performance or value their savings and investments with 23% of those with financial investments choosing to do so themselves compared with just 9% of those with financial investments reviewing through a financial adviser. Half of those questioned had not reviewed their savings or investments at all over the last twelve months.

The survey was published today by Fairstone, one of the UK’s largest chartered financial planning company, and Ipsos MORI, and focussed on the changing attitudes towards investing, retirement and financial planning amongst a broad spectrum of consumers, between 2010 and 2017.

Highlights:

  • in 2017, 52% have no retirement plan in place, compared with 37% without a plan in 2010;
  • fewer consumers had reviewed the cost or performance or their financial investments;
  • fall from 10% to 6% of those using a financial adviser compared with 2010;
  • £400bn to be passed from grandparents to younger generation over the next 10 years;
  • Fairstone’s Lee Hartley calls on industry to galvanize to improve consumer engagement.

CEO of Fairstone Lee Hartley said: “The new pension legislation has effectively doubled the period of time that financial advice is needed, yet fewer people are engaging an adviser. As a Chartered financial planning firm, we see this as an opportunity for our business and a major challenge for the industry to engage more with existing and potential clients to ensure everyone who needs it can receive professional financial advice. There is no substitute for long-term financial planning in ensuring a more comfortable retirement. What our survey clearly highlights is that previous initiatives have failed and as an industry we need to step up to the mark and engage with the broader population. Consumers need to be made aware of how they can access the best solutions for their individual circumstances.”

The survey also revealed that cost (26%) was the most important factor when choosing an IFA, followed by trust in the adviser (23%) and recommendations from friends and family (19%). These figures could indicate that following the RDR, immediate cost of advice is viewed as more important than the longer-term objectives of effectively managing investment portfolios.

Whilst auto-enrolment has led to 82% of respondents who have a pension plan have a workplace pension, 52% have no retirement plans in place and more than a quarter of people who are working have no clear idea when they might retire.

Hartley added: “Auto-enrolment should be applauded for bringing more of the population into some form of retirement planning but it falls short of addressing the significant education job that needs to be done by financial planners such as ourselves and by government to encourage a more long-term and holistic approach to retirement planning – in most cases, auto-enrolment will not meet the income requirements for retirement and planning early can make a significant difference.”

Maiden results from Tatton Asset Management

Tatton Asset Management, the AIM listed on-platform discretionary fund management (DFM) and support services business for independent financial advisers, released its maiden interim results. The firm joined the AIM market in July. In a statement management said that the results were in-line with expectations, supported by a strong period of organic growth. Read more.

Brown Shipley acquires new team for London office

The wealth planning and investment management firm Brown Shipley has acquired a new team for its London office. Read more.

Fairstone fully acquires Professional Partners

Chartered Financial Planning firm Fairstone has fully acquired Glasgow-based IFA firm Professional Partners. The deal  completes the purchase of the company following a period within Fairstone’s downstream buy out (DBO) programme. Read more.

Bitcoin Now Worth More Than All UK Pound Banknotes and Coins In Circulation

A new report by SmallBusinessPrices.co.uk revealed that:

– current value of all Bitcoins ($180 billion) is greater than the value of all banknotes and coin of most other countries/currencies including the UK ($103 billion), Canada ($59 billion) or Australia ($55 billion);

– makes it the world’s 6th most valuable currency based on the amount in circulation.

– if the price of Bitcoin rises to $15,000 it will overtake the value of all Indian Rupee banknotes and coins in circulation to become the 5th most valuable currency. Which given its recent growth rate it could do within the next month;

– however, Bitcoin’s price needs to increase to a staggering $72,300 to overtake the Euro and become the 2nd most value currency;

– and to beat the US Dollar, in terms of circulation value, it would need to increase in price to at least $85,160;

– Bitcoin is the only Cryptocurrency in the top 10 currencies worldwide, but both Ethereum and Bitcoin Cash are in the top 20.

Standard Life launches cashflow modelling tool for wrap advisers

Standard Life launcheda cashflow modelling tool for its Wrap advisers, enabling them to illustrate real time and future financial events to support the advice process pre and post retirement.

QUAERO CAPITAL launches Accessible Clean Energy fund

Geneva-based QUAERO CAPITAL has launched an Accessible Clean Energy fund managed by Martina Turner and Zoë VanderWolk, to capture increasing investor interest in the switch to alternative clean energy sources worldwide.

The $32 million UCITS fund, a Luxembourg domiciled SICAV registered for Pan-European distribution in different countries, will be marketed to institutional and professional investors across Europe and the UK. It is a high conviction, active strategy which strengthens the sector funds offering from QUAERO CAPITAL.

Tenet partners with The Hanley Economic Building Society

Tenet has partnered with The Hanley Economic Building Society, further expanding the lending choices for Tenet members. Tenet Group chief executive Martin Greenwood said: “Tenet has established a reputation as a strong supporter of building societies, recognising that they are an important part of the market, especially with the ability to often be more flexible in their underwriting. We look forward to working with The Hanley in the year ahead.”

EQ Investors recertifies as a B Corporation

EQ Investors (EQ), the boutique wealth manager led by John Spiers, has recertified as a B Corporation (B Corp), reinforcing its commitment to measure its social and environmental impact and use business as a force for good. The company first certified as a founding UK B Corp in 2015, and has renewed its certification for another two-year period. B Corp is a certification scheme – similar to Fairtrade coffee or organic milk – but it looks at the whole company and everything it does, rather than just one product or service. The certification process is independently verified by the non-profit organisation B Lab.

Vanguard launches new retirement funds aimed at young

Vanguard launched the Vanguard Target Retirement 2060 Fund and the Vanguard Target Retirement 2065 Fund. These TRFs invest in Vanguard’s low-cost, high-quality equity and bond index funds and Exchange Traded Funds. They help, said Vanguard, investors take control of their retirement savings by simply choosing one of Vanguard’s 11 TRFs based on their expected retirement date. The TRF automatically adapts the asset mix for different stages of the investor’s journey to and through retirement.

SKAGEN Insight

SKAGEN Funds launched SKAGEN Insight, a global equity fund that seeks to generate outperformance by investing in companies subject to activist campaigns. The new fund will combine SKAGEN’s value-based, bottom-up approach to stock selection with a “shadow activism” methodology to allow investors to benefit from exposure to the interventions of activist shareholders

New CEO for Golden Charter

Golden Charter, the UK’s leading independent funeral plan provider, has appointed Suzanne Grahame as its new CEO. Graham takes over from outgoing CEO, Ronnie Wayte.

Indosuez Wealth Management completes Crédit Industriel et Commercial deal

Indosuez Wealth Management successfully completed the acquisition of Crédit Industriel et Commercial’s private banking operations in Singapore and the entire paid-up share capital of CIC Investors Services in Hong Kong, having received approvals from the Singapore High Court and the Securities and Futures Commission of Hong Kong. The acquisition, which was originally announced on 13 July 2017, strengthens the bank’s presence in Asia and brings its total assets under management across the region to approximately €12bn. Its current employee base in Asia has increased from 250 to more than 400 staff.

Allfunds Bank milestone

Europe´s largest fund platform Allfunds Bank, said it had achieved a new milestone by passing €350bn assets under administration globally, an increase of €100bn YTD thanks to its efforts in the digital space and expansion of products available on the platform.

Blick Rothenberg acquires Shelly Stock Hutter

The accounting, tax and advisory practice Blick Rothenberg, which is part of CogitalGroup, has acquired Shelley Stock Hutter, an audit, accountancy, outsourcing and business advisory firm. The deals forms part of Blick Rothenberg’s growth and acquisition strategy.

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