Investing for the Future: Three Potential Paths for a Tech-Powered UK Fund Industry
For over 150 years, collective investment schemes have provided millions of people in the UK and across the world with diversified access to global markets, helping them to save effectively and productively for the future. As technology and investor behaviour evolve, this paper explores where the investment funds industry may head next. Will the fund continue its incremental adaptation to the challenges and opportunities of today’s world? Will a more innovative evolution take place to connect better with customers? Or, alternatively, will it transform into a different kind of product altogether?
Principles for Maintaining Active Client Relationships
Previously titled ‘Principles for Tracing Gone-Away Customers', the updated version sets out some key Principles to aid members to maintain the currency of their client contact details. The document covers considerations that firms with direct retail consumers may wish to look into to prevent accounts becoming dormant.
An update on the IA's proposals for a revised dealing model for UK funds.
Direct2Fund ('D2F') is the optional investor-fund dealing model positioned as the alternative to the UK's traditional model in place today.
D2F facilitates investors transacting directly with their desired investment fund, bypassing the Authorised Fund Manager (AFM). The AFM has traditionally acted as a counterparty between investors and the funds they offer.
Weaving Private Assets Into Wealth Portfolios: Evolving Structures To Meet Evolving Needs
This joint White Paper with Goji explores interest among private wealth managers in making allocations to private assets in wealth portfolios. Based on a survey of private wealth managers of varying sizes, it finds almost 80% of wealth managers who responded to this survey already invest in private assets on behalf of their clients, allocating, on average, around 5% of their total assets under management (AuM). Although the research was conducted before the final LTAF rules came into force, around one in three firms was likely to consider investing in an LTAF over the next three years. The research explores some of the hurdles raised by private wealth managers to investing in private assets, including concerns over mismatch between the liquidity profile of private assets and client expectations of liquidity, availability of appropriate fund vehicles, higher costs and the restrictions on marketing Non-mainstream Pooled Investments (NMPIs) to private wealth clients.
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Investment Management in the UK 2020-2021
The IA Future World of Work
The IA has launched its landmark Future World of Work project. This project was born out of the recognition that members' focus has increasingly been drawn away from solely looking to the here and now, and onto what the future of work will look like. To support the industry in doing so, the IA commissioned a series of thought leadership pieces, written by subject matter experts from within and outside the industry, supplemented by a number of member case studies. These seek to support internal discussions and help each firm to determine their own optimal approach by providing non-prescriptive thought leadership on three key areas: The Office of the Future; Working Patterns; and Skills & Behaviours. Importantly, these are underpinned by diversity and inclusion considerations and the future regulatory environment.
Encouraging Transition of LIBOR-Linked Bonds
The IA has published a paper on 'Encouraging Transition of LIBOR-linked Bonds'.
From the end of 2021 LIBOR will be phased out by jurisdictions around the world. However there remain a large number of outstanding LIBOR-referencing bonds which have not yet transitioned to a new rate. This paper highlights the role played by the buy-side in encouraging transition, provides a guide to issuers looking to transition their bonds via consent solicitation, and makes recommendations as to the potential steps other market participants can take to help ensure an effective and timely transition.
Impact Tolerances: Appetite for Disruption
This publication relates to the incoming FCA requirements on operational resilience, entitled Impact Tolerances: Appetite for Disruption. This represents the output of our Impact Tolerances Working Group, assisted by PwC, and is intended to offer considerations for members as they set impact tolerances for their important business services. It highlights the regulatory landscape, a proposed methodology firms can adapt to their own business models, a discussion of associated challenges highlighted by working members as well as an approach to writing impact tolerance statements.
Cyber Resilience Board Engagement & Governance
We have published two publications relating to cyber security and are updates to existing IA guidance. Effective board engagement with cyber security remains crucial to building resilience, a fact also recognised by the regulators. To aid members in this field, our first report updates our previous guidance on Board Engagement and Governance, offering considerations to help boards and management to improve their understanding and management of cyber risks. In conjunction we have also published a supplementary Resource Overview highlighting additional readily available guidance for boards which members can refer to when considering cyber risk.
Value Assessment Reports
The IA has undertaken an analysis of the assessment of value reports issued in 2020. The analysis considered a sample of assessment of value reports issued by Authorised Fund Managers (AFMs) representing around 71% of UK funds by assets under management. The report covers general findings and those related to specific criteria, and makes some initial recommendations for AFMs to consider when preparing future assessment of value reports. Download
Tokenised fund series
The IA has launched our dedicated workstream looking at the tokenisation of funds. As part of our work on digital assets it appears that tokenised funds will become a reality within the UK market in the medium term; in order to support members looking to utilise this, the IA has published a number of resources on how they can be used to provide a superior experience for investors, good practice and standard-setting guides.
All of these can be found on our dedicated tokenised funds page.
Effective Governance of Operational Resilience
The IA, in collaboration with EY, have issued the next paper in our Operational Resilience series looking at how firms can effectively govern their operational resilience strategy. The paper aims to set out the regulatory expectations in this area, provide members with a series of principles by which to structure their governance framework, address the key challenges firms face in establishing effective governance of operational resilience and offer a series of questions that those with individual and collective responsibility should be considering.
The role of the long term asset fund
Following its original proposal for a Long Term Asset Fund (LTAF) in the UK Fund Regime Working Group report, issued in July 2019, the IA has produced a further position paper, setting out in more detail how the LTAF would work, particularly in respect of the investment powers, the eligible investor market and redemption terms. The paper looks at some examples of comparable structures in other countries and set out some hypothetical case studies of what the LTAF might look like. This paper was initially provided to the FCA, HM Treasury and the Bank of England in July 2020, and is now being publicly released. The IA has also produced a short two page summary explaining the LTAF proposal.
ETF performance during Coronavirus - an analysis
The latest IA research paper on Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) seeks to explore in detail the performance and resilience of these funds during coronavirus.
Asset Management Taskforce Stewardship Working Group: Investing With Purpose Report
The HM Treasury-led Asset Management Taskforce report – Investing with Purpose: Placing Stewardship at the Heart of Sustainable Growth - provides a blueprint for integrating stewardship into the investment process and seeks to cement the UK as a global centre of excellence in stewardship practice.
Investment Management in the UK
The survey captures investment management undertaken by members of the Investment Association (IA) on behalf of domestic and overseas clients.
Best Practice for FinTech Engagement: Being a responsible partner and client
The purpose of this guide is to assist in the understanding, onboarding and implementation of FinTech within the Investment and Wealth Management sector. Organisational readiness, advice on FinTech scouting, pitfalls, IP considerations and ultimately best practice for successful engagement between the Investment / Wealth Manager and the FinTech are all discussed in this guide with key takeaways for quick reference.
Operational Resilience: Business Services and Beyond
Operational Resilience is a major focus within the industry at present and will continue to define operational risk and business continuity agendas. This publication contains the conclusion of our work on Business Services.
IA Responsible Investment Framework
The investment management industry has come together to agree a common language and clear product categorisation for responsible investment approaches to help savers better access and compare funds with a focus on environmental or social outcomes.
A Manifesto for Investment Management
Plans to power the economy.
The Investment Association’s Talent Strategy
The report sets out how we will support our members to attract, develop and retain people with the skills, knowledge and competencies the investment management industry needs. It is structured around three key themes: attraction, advancement and environment with considerations around diversity and inclusion underpinning each one.
Full Report: Download
IA UK Funds Regime Working Group: Final report to HM Treasury Asset Management Taskforce
The report details how the new proposed Long-Term Asset Fund will help widen access to more illiquid assets, opening up investment opportunities for a range of customers, particularly those saving in Defined Contribution (DC) pension schemes over many decades. The UK Funds Regime Working Group final report was updated in March 2020 to incorporate a proposal from AREF for a Professional Investor Fund.
2025 Vision: Delivering for customers and the economy in a rapidly changing world
The ‘2025 Vision’ report, launched at the IA’s flagship annual Policy Conference, outlines three key areas of development.
Black Voices: Building black representation in investment management’
A landmark report into the experiences of black professionals working in the investment management industry and black students considering their careers. The report sets out ten key steps firms can take to create more diverse and inclusive workplaces.
Shareholder votes on dividend distribution in UK listed companies - The case for a Distribution Policy
This report presents findings on the prevalence of listed UK companies paying ordinary dividends without seeking shareholder approval.
Closing the Gap: Addressing the Gender Pay Gap
This inaugural report explores why the gender pay gap exists and how asset managers can help to reduce it.
Stewardship in Practice
The Stewardship Survey outlines the stewardship activities of IA members with respect to UK companies as of 30 June 2018.
Putting investment at the heart of DC Pensions
This paper examines the investment process in Defined Contribution pensions, considers ways to facilitate efficient asset allocation, and discusses increasing plan contributions and engagement.