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Draft of Zurich’s platform charges reveals generational twist

Zurich looks set to operate a tiered charging structure on its retail platform with families allowed to combine assets from three generations to benefit from lower charges.

An internal communication, seen by Money Marketing, details a list of charges, although Zurich says the document is only a draft training aid and the final charges and structure have yet to be confirmed.

According to the draft, investors with assets worth up to £50,000 will be charged 0.45 per cent. For assets of between £50,001 and £100,000 the charge will be 0.325 per cent, assets between £100,001 and £250,000 will incur a 0.3 per cent charge and for assets between £250,001 and £1m the charge will be 0.25 per cent. A charge of 0.2 per cent will be applied to assets worth over £1m.

Zurich will allow families to combine up to three generations worth of assets to bring the charges down, subject to a minimum combined investment of £200,000.

An annual flat fee of £75 will be charged for retirement accounts and will be taken quarterly, according to the draft.

The draft suggests the platform will have stockbroking charges of £10.50 per trade per fund for investments worth up to £24,999.99 and 5bps for trades worth £25,000 and over.

The platform is set to launch before the end of 2012.

Zurich UK Life head of retail propositions Mark Peters says: “We are currently finalising the charges and remuneration options for our intermediary platform, which is set to launch later this year. The information included in this document is intended for training purposes only, to illustrate to our consultants the mechanics of the platform’s charging structure.”

Thomas and Thomas Financial Services managing director Darren Lloyd Thomas says: “I think the family linking option is a good idea and should work well from an inheritance point of view. The charges seem reasonable as long as Zurich can get its message out to advisers that the platform is easy to use.”

Finance and Technology Research Centre director Ian McKenna says: “Platforms increasingly need to differentiate on more than just price. If the focus is too much on cost then the market will become very transactional. It is important for advisers too look at the overall cost rather than just the headline prices.”

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