David Ferguson: FundsNetwork payment disclosure a big industry moment
There are times and then there are moments.
In this industry we live in interesting, rapidly changing times. Times from which we will emerge with a better engagement with our customers and a sector that we might just be proud of. There is a real chance that we can finally build the kind of consumer trust in financial services that is essential to the long-term prosperity of the entire country, not to mention the sector.
Much of that trust will be founded on transparency and consumer confidence that the scams, kickbacks and dirty margins of the past have been truly consigned to history. It’s still early days and there’s a lot of damage to be undone but I’d like to believe that Nucleus has done as much as anyone in moving the market on, in encouraging participants to be accountable for what they charge and ultimately in starting to build a more engaging sector.
That is why today is a moment. There have been a few others since Nucleus was created in 2006 but this morning’s announcement that one of the fund supermarket platforms has elected to disclose fund manager rebates (ie largely how it is paid) is a very significant one. A moment at which the past (at last) began to catch up with the future.
The early pioneers at Transact marked out the path in 2000 and the wrap sector has generally been committed to transparent models since that time. There is a long way to go before the entire market is exposed and we may have to wait a very long time before some of the life company and fund supermarket pricing models become properly understood. But for now I am going to enjoy this moment.
The wheels are turning in the right direction, whatever brakes some providers continue to apply.
David Ferguson is the chief executive of Nucleus