FTAdviser’s 2018 Top 100 Financial Advisers list uses data collated by our research partner Strategic Insight to provide a snapshot of some of the very best intermediaries working in the UK today.
FTAdviser’s 2018 list of advisers differs significantly from the ranking produced by FTAdviser in past years.
Rather than being based purely on sales, the list now ranks companies by looking at other factors that are key to investors seeking the best person to assist them with their finances.
This year, we look at growth rate of the advisory businesses, the number of years of experience each business has managing assets in different economic and interest-rate environments and how highly qualified advisers are.
We have considered a range of factors to rank each advice company because the quality of a business is not reflected just by how much new cash it is bringing in.
Our approach produces a useful indication of some of the best investment advice companies assisting clients in the market.
This year FTAdviser has scored businesses on how good a job they are doing at retaining clients’ cash and checked outflows against inflows too.
In order to check how advisers are managing their clients’ investments, Strategic Insight used data received directly from fund managers covering 88 per cent of the retail investment market plus 17 of the nation’s biggest investment platforms.
Consumers want advisers to find the best funds for their needs, so another factor we have added to the rankings for this year is whether investment vehicles being recommended by a business are those that generate the best yield.
As a result, this year our Top 100 Financial Advisers list checks how much in assets under management were held on the 17 investment platforms and with many of the nation’s biggest fund houses. We then checked whether assets grew or diminished once excluding net flows.
FTAdviser’s Top 100 Financial Advisers list factors this fund performance in to where the business appears in our list.
So, where an advice company features on the list also gives some indication of how their AUM naturally grew based on their smart investment choices.
In recognition of advice companies’ commitment to their professional development, they were also awarded bonus points for having earned top industry certifications.
As using raw numbers of financial advisers would simply benefit the larger companies (and thus provide too much of a duplicate of the AUM score) we have split businesses into quintiles based on the number of CF30 designees and awarded points depending on which quintile the company was in.
While this still gives the advantage to the bigger companies, it is not as much of an advantage.
Clients also want to know the adviser they see today will help them through the financial ups and downs of tomorrow.
This year’s list also rates businesses on their ability to keep advisers in their ranks.
Experience counts too, especially when uncertainty is greater than usual.