Investments  

P2P lender opens doors to advisers

P2P lender opens doors to advisers

A peer-to-peer lender has opened its doors to advisers in the hope its investments will be included in a growing number of portfolios. 

Ratesetter is set to launch a platform for advisers in February next year with the lender predicting a "mainstream adoption" of the P2P asset class in light of the FCA's most recent regulation in the sector. 

At the beginning of the month the regulator implemented stricter rules to govern the P2P market, designed to prevent investors from taking what the regulator considers to be excessive risk.

Under the requirements new clients are not able to invest more than 10 per cent of their assets in P2P products without advice. 

The rules came after the P2P landscape came under increased scrutiny by the Financial Conduct Authority this year after a string of high-profile failures, including the collapse of platform Lendy in May and most recently Funding Secure in October. 

Ratesetter said it had always intended to broaden its reach to the adviser community as a "natural next step", but the market was likely to be consolidating as a result of the tougher rules.

Mario Lupori, chief investments officer at Ratesetter, said the platform had so far lent £3.7bn invested by investors, who had not lost a "single penny" and could release their money within an average of one day.

He said this was because of a provision fund set up by Ratesetter which set aside money for investors in the event of any bad debt. 

Mr Lupori said: "P2P is a new asset class and represents an opportunity for investors to access returns previously gobbled up by the banks.  

"Our research with advisers tells us that there is demand for a product that pays more than cash without the volatility of shares. 

"Our target is that it becomes normal for an investor with a diversified investment portfolio to include an allocation to an investment product like ours." 

The lender has predicted a mainstream adoption of the P2P asset class, in light of the "watershed moment" seen in the industry with the introduction of the FCA's new regulation. 

rachel.mortimer@ft.com 

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