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By Rebecca Clancy | Published May 29, 2012

Franklin Templeton launches 0.75% RDR shares

Franklin Templeton is launching RDR-ready share classes for its UK clients, including ‘clean fee’ shares for platform clients that are priced to match the industry norm.

The group will this Thursday (May 31) launch ‘W’ share classes for platform-based customers, which will carry annual management charges (AMCs) of 0.75 per cent and include no bundled adviser or platform payments.

The W classes will technically carry a minimum investment requirement of £1m, but this will be waived when platforms can aggregate clients’ assets together.

Franklin Templeton is also launching ‘Z’ share classes for direct clients who do not use a platform.

Those classes will have a minimum investment requirement of just £1,000 but, due to the additional cost of handling clients with a small volume of assets invested, the Z shares will carry AMCs priced at 0.95 per cent.

Franklin Templeton’s new share classes will be rolled out across its entire UK-domiciled product range, denominated in sterling.

Fund providers are launching RDR clean fee shares as they gear up for the implementation of the RDR on January 1 2013, at which point advisers will be banned from recommending clients buy into funds that pay out adviser commission.

Franklin Templeton’s clean-fee platform shares are in line with those of Schroders, BlackRock, Rathbones, Ignis and others in charging 0.75 per cent. Baillie Gifford recently announced it was lining up share classes that contain a 0.65 per cent AMC, slightly undercutting the industry average.

Other firms including Invesco Perpetual are offering RDR classes that will continue to include a bundled platform payment of 0.25 per cent and levy AMCs of roughly 1 per cent a year. M&G Investments are expected to offer both types of chare class.

Elsewhere, Franklin Templeton is also adding W platform shares and Z direct shares to its range of Luxembourg-based Sicav funds.

The W shares will technically carry a minimum investment of $3m (£1.9m) although this will also be waived when platforms can aggregate clients’ assets together.

The Luxembourg-based Z shares for direct investors will carry an AMC of 1 per cent, compared to 0.95 per cent for their UK-based fund equivalents, as well as a $5,000 minimum investment requirement.

UK country head Ian Wilkins said: “In bringing to market RDR-ready share classes seven months prior to the RDR deadline, we have aimed to give platforms, advisors and underlying clients clarity and flexibility.”

The group will roll out further share class launches on June 22, including dollar and euro denominated classes, and will consider further launches later this year.

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