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Advisers increasingly counting on accountant and lawyer referrals to attract new clients – Friday IFA news round-up, the week’s news in a nutshell…

advisers increasingly

Here’s your Friday IFA new 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.

Advisers increasingly counting on accountant and lawyer referrals to attract new clients

  • More than half expect referrals from accountants and solicitors to grow
  • But recommendations from existing clients remain the biggest source for creating new advice opportunities

Exclusive adviser research from Prudential shows that advisers expect referrals from accountants and lawyers will become a bigger source of new business over the next 12 months.

According to 37% of advisers, referrals from existing clients are by far the biggest source of attracting new clients – but referrals from lawyers and accountants are firmly established as the second best source.

More than half of advisers believe the number of referrals they receive from other professionals will rise in the year ahead boosting new business levels. The study found 15% of advisers say accountant and lawyer referrals are their biggest source of new business – slightly up from 11% in a similar study last year.

Part of the reason for this expected growth in referrals may be an increasing willingness by advisers to outsource specialised and complex advice. Nearly half of advisers  say they outsource to specialists while another 25% indicated a willingness to outsource in the future. Just 23 per cent say they will never outsource to another profession.

Another reason may be the growing need for advice on protection from inheritance tax bills with around 58% of advisers saying that they’ve seen a rise in inheritance tax advice enquiries in the past year. Looking to the future, IHT planning was identified by 37% of advisers as the second most significant source of opportunities to provide advice over the next three years, just behind the 40 per cent who said advice on taxation of retirement income.

Other sources for attracting new clients to advisers include their or their network’s website, with 11% of advisers saying this is their best source of new clients, while nearly one in ten say their direct marketing including social media generates the most leads. Events are still important – around 8%  say they identify new advice opportunities from them – while the same number say approved adviser lists are their best new business source.

Biggest drivers for creating advice opportunities to adviser firms:

Existing client recommendations 37%
Referrals from accountants / solicitor 15%
Company or network’s online presence 11%
Direct marketing activity including my social networks 9%
Approved adviser lists (e.g. Money Advice Service, Unbiased.co.uk etc.) 8%
Client events 8%
Other 13%

First impact product from Standard Life

Standard Life Investments launched its first impact product, the Global Equity Impact Fund, co-managed by Sarah Norris and Dominic Byrne. Impact investing involves investing in companies that have the intention of generating measurable positive social and environmental impact alongside financial returns.  While environmental, social and governance analysis has become an integral tool for investment managers; screening for positive impact is ready to enter the mainstream. 


Fairstone’s latest appointment to senior team

Fairstone Group has appointed Sheriden Davy as group compliance director, with effect from January 2018. His appointment is the latest addition to the firm’s senior management team. He will also join the Group’s Executive Committee. With over 15 years’ experience in the financial services industry, Davy has held senior roles at Intrinsic, True Potential and Blackrock.


Investors missing out?

Investors could be missing out on opportunities to invest in emerging markets because of their misconceptions about the asset class, a recent study by Templeton Emerging Markets Investment Trust has revealed. The study, which examined the current attitudes, sentiment and perceptions towards emerging markets of self-directed investors, revealed that their biggest barrier to investing is lack of knowledge, with 58% of respondents saying that they would not consider investing in emerging markets due to the belief that they do not have the right level of knowledge required.


Regulators, firms and professional bodies urged to work together to close information loopholes

A tri-partite financial services professional bodies’ Alliance is urging regulators and firms to work more closely with professional bodies by closing information loopholes, which will ultimately help prevent “bad apples” from re-circulating within the industry.

The Chartered Body Alliance (The Alliance) response to the Banking Standard Board (BSB) Consultation on Certification and Risk has broadly welcomed the proposals for further guidance supporting fitness and propriety assessment of individuals.


Jupiter strengthens fixed income expertise with US credit hire

Jupiter has appointed Charlie Spelina as a US Credit Analyst. He will be a part of the ongoing development of Jupiter’s fixed income team. Charlie, who has over ten years of investment experience in the US and UK, will help to build out the team’s US credit expertise, generating ideas primarily for Jupiter’s £13bn unconstrained bond strategy.


Millions don’t have a pension

The FCA highlighted the fact many millions in the UK still don’t have a pension, in spite of the recent progress made by the auto-enrolment programme. Andrew Bailey spoke about this issue in a speech to the Investment Association.

Tom McPhail, Head of Policy, at Hargreaves Lansdown, said: “Auto-enrolment has been an incredible success, helping over 8 million people so far to start building up savings for their retirement. However millions more have been left behind. Low earners, the young, part-time workers, the self-employed and people working past retirement age all risk missing out on the generous top-ups available. The sooner the benefits of this fantastic system can be extended to help more of the population, the better.

“Neither the government not the regulator has any kind of clear policy to encourage more saving and investing; it isn’t even part of the FCA’s statutory objectives. We’d like to see this challenge given greater priority by the government as it has profound implications both for individuals and for society more generally.

“If you’re not in a work-place pension and you are eligible to join one, then do so because you’ll get free money from your employer and the government. If you aren’t eligible then look at setting up your own pension; you can start saving from as little as £5 a week.”


As savings crisis looms, employers failing to tackle employee knowledge gap

A lack of across the board financial education is failing to close the employee savings gap, according to a new report published today by Close Brothers in conjunction with the Pension and Lifetime Savings Association (PLSA).

Key findings are:

  • a third (33%) of UK employees are saving less than £50 a month, with one in five (20%) not saving anything at all;
  • only two fifths (40%) of employees are confident in choosing the right savings product;
  • 65% of employers recognise that they have a key role to play in improving employees’ financial wellbeing
  • but three quarters (75%) of employees say that their employer has not provided any financial education to help them understand what savings choices exist.

Kames Capital enters US market

UK investment manager Kames Capital is entering the US market for the first time after registering with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The move will see the UK based investment manager initially offer US investors access to two of its global equity strategies, the Kames Global Equity Income strategy and the Kames Global Sustainable Equity strategy. These will potentially be followed by a number of other strategies which the firm has identified as having strong demand from investors in this market.


Household Inflation Index

Tilney’s Household Inflation Index, which comes 20 years after the Bank of England was given power to control interest rates, revealed that higher income households have experienced 15% more inflation than typical households in the last two decades, as they spend a disproportionate amount of money on buying homes, which have soared in price, and education, which has inflated by 326% thanks to the spiralling cost of private school fees. The report also shows that lower income households have been hit hardest by inflation since the financial crisis, due to the rising cost of food and utilities.

Key findings: 

  • wealthiest 10% of households have seen overall inflation of 64% since 1997, compared to 50.7% for typical households and 53.8% for lowest income families;
  • a game of two halves over the last two decades; inflation hit wealthiest households hardest pre-recession, but impacted lower income households most since 2007/8;
  • each household experiences inflation differently – wealthier households devote proportionally more spend to education, holidays and buying homes, all of which have risen dramatically in cost in the last 20 years;
  • Tilney’s data analysis mirrors the 20-year period over which the Bank of England has been granted independence in setting interest rates as a tool for controlling inflation;
  • experts warn the extent to which mis-calculating inflationary impact can have on standards of living and future proofing finances.

Sanlam appoints Charlie Parker as Head of Portfolio Management

Parker joins Sanlam UK from Neptune Investment Management, where he spent the last three years as Director, Asset Management. Prior to this, he spent eight years at Citywire Financial Publishers as a journalist before being appointed as Director, where he was responsible for establishing a division providing outsourced services to the asset management industry. Parker will work closely with CEO of Sanlam Wealth, John White, and has been tasked with helping grow the division’s business and overseeing the development of its proposition.


Millennials value pensions

Workers from the millennial generation are putting pension saving high up their list of workplace priorities, according to new research from Prudential. Key findings were:

  • nearly six out of ten younger workers consider the quality of the pension on offer before deciding to take a job;
  • just under two out of five believe they will match today’s pensioners for standard of living when they give up work;
  • more than half admit they are envious of the retirement finances of those who have already given up work or are about to do so.

IW&I boosts Reigate office

Investec Wealth & Investment has added to its Reigate office with the appointment of Lucy Grier as Business Development Director. Her primary responsibility will be to grow IW&I’s DFM business through independent financial advisers in the region. She has more than a decade of experience including nearly five years as CEO of IFA Sales and Acquisitions, which specialised in advising independent financial advisers on buying and selling businesses.

 


T Rowe Price joins Panacea roster

Panacea Adviser, the online community and resource for financial advisers and paraplanners, announced that T Rowe Price as the latest investment manager to join its roster of provider partners. T Rowe Price, the $948bn global asset manager, has increased its footprint in the UK advisory market in recent years, as demonstrated by the launch of its OEIC in 2016.


Pension savers to receive simpler info

Pension savers approaching retirement are set to receive simpler, clearer communications in the future, which should help them to make better decisions about how and when to draw on their retirement savings.

The news follows lengthy trials by the Behavioural Insights Team on behalf of the Pension Wise service. Work was conducted in conjunction with LV=, using actual customers approaching retirement. This has allowed the results to be tracked against control groups using the traditional wake-up packs, thereby providing unambiguous evidence of the benefit of clear, simple communication. Those receiving the Pension Passport were 10 times more likely to make use of the free Pension Wise guidance service. Following the publication of this research, Hargreaves Lansdown expects the FCA and DWP will now push the pensions industry towards simpler communications as soon as possible.

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