Investments  

Interactive Investor scraps regular investing fee

Interactive Investor scraps regular investing fee

Interactive Investor has scrapped its fee for regular investing, the latest in a string of charges removed by platforms aiming to reduce cost to the consumer.

The direct to consumer platform will cull its regular investing fee from tomorrow (January 8), meaning investors will no longer have to pay a 99p charge per investment providing they invest at least £25 per month.

Interactive Investor hopes the move will leave customers with “just one easy-to-understand, pounds-and-pence monthly flat fee”.

Following the changes investors can invest in funds, trusts, ETFs or individual stocks for no extra cost.

Last year the platform replaced its quarterly flat fee with a monthly flat fee after scrapping its exit fee in November 2018.

Richard Wilson, chief executive at Interactive Investor, said: “The removal of the regular investing fee means one less thing to get confused about and one less platform fee to add up. 

“It’s about building confidence and knowing that’s all there is to it. It’s just free. That’s the value.”

Exit fees hit the headlines in March last year when the Financial Conduct Authority announced a consultation on banning or restricting the fees charged by platforms to clients wishing to leave. The regulator then delayed its decision on exit fees in December.

Fees charged for investing and advice have been a hot topic in general in the past year, with advisers, platforms and fund houses involved in a ‘race to the bottom’ in a competitive market.

Hargreaves Lansdown scrapped its exit charge in September while other platforms have battled to keep their prices low. Most recently, Transact shaved basis points off multiple charges.

Moira O’Neill, head of personal finance at Interactive Investor, said regular investing charges added complexity and “added up” to potentially thousands of pounds over the long term.

Paul Stocks, financial services director at Dobson and Hodge, said: “Lowering and simplifying charges is always welcomed and in this case it looks positive. 

“We do need to be mindful of providers bundling costs, something investment regulation is currently at pains to prevent, as there are often situations where unbundled and more complicated charges can in fact be in the investor's best interest given that they pay for what they use and the result could be lower.”

imogen.tew@ft.com

What do you think about the issues raised by this story? Email us on fa.letters@ft.com to let us know.