Fund houses fail to meet ‘spirit’ of FCA value rules, report warns

Other fund houses, such as St James’s Place and in the case of Hargreaves Lansdown’s debut report, attracted criticism after they insisted their funds delivered good value.

Progress made

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More positively, the CFA UK found that the reports identified and evaluated scored relatively well for accessibility and general presentation.

It said: “The FCA’s guidance was widely-framed and, in many cases, the group was impressed by the creative thinking that went into the design of many report features to make them more digestible. 

“The better reports often displayed data in an attractive format, using tables, charts and graphs or even short video content to reduce the volume of text.”

Reporting on fund performance also scored highly, with 11 per cent of reports being awarded full marks and the CFA finding that significant effort had been made to compare investments against peer groups or benchmarks.

Will Goodhart, chief executive of CFA UK, said: “A number of the reports analysed were excellent and the improvements in quality seen over the course of the year also indicate that publishers are learning from what others in the sector are doing and responding to negative feedback on some earlier versions.

“However, the overall weaknesses of reporting needs to be addressed so that we can make these reports genuinely useful to investors.”

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