FCA re-regs claims questioned by latest statistics

Despite the Financial Conduct Authority stating re-registration progress has been “less than satisfactory”, technology provider Altus found more than three quarters of the market now allows customers to switch.

The latest research from the firm showed the number of completed transfers using electronic messaging has increased dramatically between July and September this year with volumes more than double those of the previous quarter.

At the end of September 14 platforms, which Altus claimed represented more than 80 per cent of the assets under administration (AUA), 38 fund managers, which the provider claimed represented 75 per cent of UK funds under management, operated live electronic account transfers and fund re-registrations.

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According to Altus, all the live transfer participants are using the open interoperable standards based on the UK Funds Market Practice Group’s (UKFMPG) Transfers market practice, ISO 20022/SWIFT messaging and all are operating within the Tisa Exchange (TeX) legal framework.

Altus calculated the average time to complete electronic transfers was between two and five working days, five or six times faster than paper based transfers.

Ben Cocks, products director of Altus, said: “While the FCA is right to stress the urgency of the need for those firms who are yet to sign up to make progress with re-reg, we have recently witnessed a significant growth in the number of platforms, fund managers, suppliers and volumes of automated transfers which is good for the industry and the consumer.

“It demonstrates how open and interoperable standards can drive down costs, improve efficiency and deliver better outcomes for the end investor. The next challenge is to extend the model to the wider investment and pensions industry.”

Matt Benson, head of operations at Cofunds, added: “We’ve been a vocal supporter of an industry-wide solution to platform-to-platform registration for some years now, so it is encouraging to see processing times falling significantly as additional platforms, administrators and fund managers join the initiative.

“We are also seeing a greater level of co-operation between platforms, which will of course ultimately benefit advisers and their clients.”