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Adviser qualifications could close ‘scary’ education gap

HSBC alternative investment chief executive Barbara Rupf Bee has called for more adviser qualifications on hedge funds to boost the diverse knowledge base in the industry.

Rupf Bee told the hedge fund round table meeting that HSBC has run a series of seminars on hedge funds to gauge exactly what sort of knowledge base there is in the market and that the results were startling.

She said: “The education gap has to be addressed on the adviser side as the lack of knowledge from some IFAs was not only bad, it was scary. Until they understand the impact of hedge funds in the retail space, there is absolu-tely no point in using them.”

Thames River Capital chief compliance and risk officer Toby Hampden-Acton also believes that the level of understanding has to be raised for their sake as much as for anyone else.

He says: “What the industry does not want is everyone buying their insurance after the hurricane has been and gone.”

IFG financial planning strategist Donna Bradshaw agreed but added that qualifications could be a problem themselves.

Bradshaw said: “The difficulty for advisers is that there are a ridiculous number of qualifications from a raft of different bodies, hence no general educational standard being reached.”

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