Unit Trusts  

Rathbones’ unit trusts see £550m net inflows in 2016

Rathbones’ unit trusts see £550m net inflows in 2016

Rathbones saw £554m of net sales into its unit trusts business last year boosting total assets to £4bn after strong demand for global equity and fixed income offerings.

Rathbone Brothers' preliminary results showed unit trust gross sales reached more than £1.3bn, up from £900m in 2015. However, the firm said sales slowed slightly into the year end, a move which has continued into early 2017.

It added: “Redemptions also remained elevated in 2016 at £700m, reflecting the increased levels of disinvestment seen across the industry.”

The net inflows were spread across the range of funds although the report noted the Income, Global Opportunities and Ethical Bond funds all posted strong inflows, helping the unit trust funds under management to increase 29 per cent to £4bn by the end of the year. This was helped by new Luxembourg-based feeder funds for several vehicles.

Philip Howell, chairman of Rathbone Brothers, said: “In contrast to the trend of net redemptions experienced across the industry, our unit trusts business continues to demonstrate strong growth with total net inflows of £554m."

Meanwhile Rathbone Brothers’ core investment management segment reported that overall funds under management increased 17.1 per cent to £34.2bn. 

The report noted funds under management in accounts linked to independent financial advisers (IFAs) and provider panel relationships increased by £1.2bn during 2016, ending the year at £6.7bn.

This came as the firm said it would develop its distribution strategy - currently focused on promoting the discretionary management services to professional intermediaries. Rathbones alluded to launching a direct-to-consumer service, and said £200m on inflows in 2017 would come from its 12 strategic relationships with networks and national advisory firms.

It stated: "To augment our full discretionary service for intermediaries, we will be launching a new Managed Portfolio Service for lower value clients of intermediary partnerships, being a centrally managed execution-only service based on our Rathbone Multi Asset Portfolio funds."