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Halal robo-adviser launches in UK

Halal robo-adviser launches in UK

The first robo-adviser with a Sharia-compliant platform has launched in the UK.

Wahed Invest already operates in the US after being launched in 2015 but has now been authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority to expand into Britain.

The platform allows users to open an account with a minimum investment of £100, and to invest in a portfolio of ethically responsible stocks, Islamic bonds and gold.

Islamic bonds, or Sukuks, are different to conventional bonds because they pay a portion of the earnings generated by the issuer, rather than interest, which does not comply with Sharia.

Mohammed Ibrahim Morshed, head of UK at Wahed Invest, said: "Our mission is to make Halal investing an accessible and affordable means of long-term saving for the millions of UK Muslims who currently feel excluded from mainstream financial services.

"For too long, the needs of the community have been overlooked, with many Muslims finding it impossible to build nest eggs that are in line with their faith. 

"By providing access to a low-cost, accessible investment platform that is advised by our full-time ethical review board, Muslim and non-Muslim investors alike can now be completely confident they are creating portfolios that are ethically sound."

Wahed charges a single annual fee, inclusive of all management fees, custodian fees, and transaction fees.

The service offers both an Isa and a regular account and charges 0.99 per cent for investments of between £100 and £249,000 and 0.49 per cent for investments of £250,000 or more.

All securities undergo a screening process in which Wahed’s investment management partners and ethical scholars build portfolios to provide returns. This means excluding excess debt, tobacco, alcohol, firearms, gambling, adult entertainment, impure foodstock and usurious institutions.

Wahed declined to comment on how many clients and assets it had.

Last week Wealthify become one of the first online investment platforms to offer ethical portfolios in the UK, joining Moola and Wealthsimple.

damian.fantato@ft.com

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