Advice gap widens despite rise in robo-advice

Anthony Morrow, chief executive of OpenMoney, said: "It is clear that many more people would benefit from taking financial advice and the reasons why they don’t are not as straightforward as it being too expensive, or individuals not having enough money.

"‘Robo-advice’ is often touted as filling the mass market advice gap, but while some digital providers now offer one-off advice, many simply offer online investment management without real financial advice and personal recommendations. 

"Without offering personalised ongoing advice, these digital wealth managers cannot replace the service provided by advice professionals."

Mr Morrow said bridging the advice gaps required the financial services industry to work together with financial guidance organisations and a wide range of bodies — including the government, the FCA, local government, employers and medical professionals — to improve awareness.

The sector also needed to encourage the take-up of existing financial support and promote the benefits of protecting consumers’ financial futures through money management, financial planning and, crucially, suitable financial advice, according Mr Morrow.

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