Multi-asset survey: key findings

What an adviser using multi-asset funds looks like:

Of the 157 people who responded to the survey:


Article continues after advert

Male advisers: 93 per cent.

Female advisers: 6 per cent.


Under 25: 1 per cent

25 to 34: 14 per cent

35 to 44: 27 per cent

45 to 54: 29 per cent

55 to 34: 24 per cent

Main area of business

Investments: 60 per cent

Pensions: 29 per cent

Protection: 5 per cent

Mortgages: 1 per cent

Tax: 2 per cent

Other: 3 per cent

Annual average wealth per client on which they advise:

Under £50,000: 10 per cent

£51,000 to £100,000: 36 per cent

£101,000 to £500,000: 34 per cent

£501,000 to £1m: 5 per cent

Over £1m: 5 per cent

Don’t manage investments directly: 9 per cent

Flexible investment comes out on top:

Asked which type of multi-asset fund advisers prefer, of 157 respondents, flexible investment was the clear winner.

0-35 per cent shares: 4 per cent (6 advisers)

20-60 per cent shares: 31 per cent (48 advisers)

40-85 per cent shares: 22 per cent (35 advisers)

Flexible investment: 41 per cent (64 advisers)

When it comes to stock market mitigation, a majority of respondents (65%) agreed that multi-asset funds would help in stock market mitigation, while 33 per cent said this was not the case.

Darius McDermott, managing director of London-based Chelsea Financial Services, said: “If advisers want that greater flexibility on the equity portion then they clearly need to be aware of the extra risk. The whole re-naming of those managed sectors from cautious, balanced and active, to basically the 20-60, 40-80 and flexible, was because there were a whole load funds that were in the cautious managed sector that weren’t very cautious. The new sector names, while maybe not perfect, at least outline the equity choices. The whole point of multi-asset is not to have all of it in equities, so I would agree that flexibility is key, but if I am buying a multi-asset fund I don’t want to wake up and find 100 per cent in equities ever. I think the 20-60, or 40-85 are plenty free enough for a multi-asset fund. If I am buying a multi-asset fund I want it to be diversified, by that we want more than just equities and bonds, we want the ability to do currency, managed cash absolute returns – that is the whole point of multi-asset funds: this basket of diverse asset classes.”

Multi-asset vs. multi-manager:

When asked to choose between multi-asset and multi-manager funds (Is multi-asset more helpful than multi-manager?) respondents came out clearly in favour of multi-assets, with 64 per cent responding in the affirmative (100 advisers) and 35 per cent (55 advisers) in the negative.

Jonathan Fry, director of London-based Jonathan Fry & Co, said: “In the current climate with a much closer scrutiny on fees multi-manager funds with layers of charges are going to be much less of an attractive proposition I would have thought. We certainly have moved away from multi-manager type funds in recent years. Multi-asset is a very different proposal, and in many ways they are not entirely different to managed funds that have been around for years. What multi-asset is doing is bringing a wider set of asset classes to what in the past have largely been called managed funds. I think that most or all advisers would recognise the importance of proper diversification among asset classes and making informed asset allocation calls is probably the most important aspect of advising a client and looking after their money while you are advising them.”