Hargreaves Lansdown launches first-time investor service

Hargreaves Lansdown launches first-time investor service

Hargreaves Lansdown has launched a service for first-timer investors.

Simply Invest will offer funds with charges as low as 0.04 per cent as well as tools to help learn about investing.

First-timers will have access to the usual features offered by the fund supermarket giant, including a mobile app, as well as access to low-cost fund options. Newcomers will initially be invested into the Legal and General Index fund, which tracks the FTSE All-Share.

Under a new deal with Hargreaves, its charges will drop from 0.1 per cent to 0.04 per cent for Simply Invest customers.

As well as this, users will pay the usual platform charge of 0.45 per cent.

Danny Cox, chartered financial planner at Hargreaves Lansdown said: "This service makes investing in the stock market easy for first-time investors, while helping them build their knowledge and confidence with a monthly tutorial delivered to their inbox."

Hargreaves said it had chosen a UK tracker fund for its first-time investors because the "home market" made sense for those starting off and it still provides diversification because a high proportion of FTSE earnings come from overseas.

Mr Cox added: "By simply investing in a low-cost tracker fund, investors can get valuable long-term exposure to the market without any further ado."

Users, who will be sent 12 monthly tutorial emails to help them build up the knowledge and confidence to invest, covering jargon and how to create an investment portfolio, will have the opportunity to choose their own investments when they feel ready.

Holly Mackay, founder of Boring Money, said: "The main reason many potential investors don’t make the move out of cash is confusion about jargon, complexity and where to start.

"Industry experts can argue the toss about what any simpler service should look like but I think the main challenge is just to help people take the first step at a decent price. This is a positive move by Hargreaves."

Those using Simply Invest will be offered the choice of an Isa, Lifetime Isa, self-invested personal pension or fund account.

Pete Chadborn, director at advice firm Plan Money, said: "This seems to be a straight-forward solution for first time investors who do not feel the need to seek advice and, due to Hargreaves Lansdown's recognisable brand, I'm sure it will be a success.

"The low cost fund is appealing but the relatively expensive platform costs may be a barrier for some if they make comparisons to, say, the likes of Vanguard."