Your Industry  

Expensive advice & fund performance: week in news

Expensive advice & fund performance: week in news

As painful as the first full week back at work for a while may have been, fear not: it's nearly over.

But while it may be a new year, you wouldn't be able to tell that from the news.

Let's have a look at what has been happening: it's time for the week in news.

1) Price of everything, value of nothing

This week the Financial Conduct Authority warned of the detriment caused by "poor and expensive" services from financial advisers in the retail investments sector.

In the annual publication of its views on each financial sector, the regulator warned consumers could "struggle to assess" the cost of advice and were vulnerable to overpaying for services they may not need.

The FCA said it remained concerned about the availability of suitable value-for-money advice for consumers with small pots to invest, warning high charges at any point in the "value chain" could reduce consumer returns.

2) It's not me, it's you

There are many who rate Jacob de Tusch-Lec's skills, but the manager of the £3.9bn Artemis Global Income fund has certainly tried to shift the blame for his fund's underperformance this week.

He said investors in the stock market were behaving impatiently and buying the wrong stocks, dragging down the share prices of more deserving shares.

Mr de Tusch-Lec said investors were prizing stocks where the investment thesis was simple and where earnings were predictable, which hampered his fund's performance.

3) Seeing the Woodford the trees

Speaking of fund managers, Neil Woodford has been reading the runes and come to the conclusion he is definitely right.

He said he UK economy has entered 2019 with "strong economic momentum" which will help the returns of his fund in the year ahead.

Mr Woodford, who is much more positive about the UK economy than his peers, predicted the investment backdrop would look "very different" to the one that has prevailed for the last two years and this would be a backdrop which would favour his funds much more.

Mr Woodford's flagship Equity Income fund has lost 7.8 per cent over the past three years, while the IA UK All Companies sector gained 21.4 per cent and while it has started to outperform its sector by a few percentage points, it has continued to lose money.

Still a work in progress then maybe...

4) New Year weight loss

Most people appear to start the new year seeking to lose weight, but Hargreaves Lansdown has taken this approach to investing as well.

The FTSE 100 company has cut its Wealth 150, which contained 85 funds, and turned it into the Wealth 50, which contains 60 funds. All of which makes perfect sense.

But the fact all of the funds on the list are understood to be offering discounts on their annual charges to Hargreaves Lansdown has prompted criticism, particularly by Terry Smith, manager of Fundsmith Equity, which was not included despite being the top performer in the IA Global sector.