Structured Products - June 2012
Often referred to as the Marmite of the industry, structured products are no stranger to hitting the headlines. Rather than some more benign financial products, they spark reaction in most financial advisers, with some having a blanket ban on using them while others extol their virtues.
This division in the industry has long been the case and is traced back to many being wary of the counterparty risk involved and others finding them difficult to both understand and compare. With products using different indices, offering varying levels of capital protection and a range of kick-out options, many advisers and investors find them hard to comprehend. The regular iterations that emerge from providers, each with different tweaks, do not help the cause.
But in the run-up to the RDR, many advisers feel they will need to look at product areas they would have previously discounted in a bid to retain their independent status and show that they are truly looking at the whole of the market.
Many see this as a potential tipping point for structured products. This is explored in the special report when Fernando Gasca looks at the effect that the RDR will have on the sector.
As the survey of the IFA community elsewhere in this special report shows, there is likely to be an increase in sales next year. However, the results also show those who currently do not use them are set in their ways and are not likely to adopt them in the future.
Constant re-education is the name of the game if providers want to show advisers how they have moved on from the often poor marketing material and unclear structures of the past. But the question remains, can you ever really shift the Marmite image?
IN THIS REPORT
With just six months until the RDR, structured products are still far from popular find Holly Black and Laura Suter
Fernando Gasca asks what effect the RDR will have on the structured products market and how advisers should prepare