View more on these topics

Elephants on the trail

Towry Law’s chief executive’s justification for taking “up to £6m annually in trail commission’ from the funds of 300,000 investors for whom he admits he provides no service whatsoever highlights two elephant-in-the- room questions which many fund industry participants previously concealed from consumers, namely:

1: Can anyone defend a fund charge “for advice” if the fund is bought and held without advice?

2: What self-serving argument will any fund investment group grandee deploy next year, after the FSA publishes its RDR policy statement finally signing the death warrant for the trail commission component of fund annual charges, to justify not lowering the annual charge by trail’s 0.5 per cent to the honest cost of managing my money, that is, 1 per cent?

Bruce Dalton
London W5


Howard moves to Barclays

Former Prudential business director of investment platforms Carl Howard has joined Barclays UK Retail Banking as head of direct investments. Howard, who had worked at Pru since 2001, left the insurer in July. He was director of investment platforms at Pru since February 2008, responsible for developing its wrap strategy. A Prudential spokesman says Howard […]


Aifa concerned by FSA guidance on structured products

The Association of Independent Financial Advisers says it has “real concerns” about some of the FSA’s recent guidance on the structured product market and is forming a working party to address its impact on firms. 

What exactly is product innovation?

By Fiona Tait, Pensions Specialist Ros Altmann reportedly hoped for more product innovation following pension freedom¹ and, according to one poll, 66 per cent of advisers also believe that providers should be doing more². This article considers whether there is a real client need for new products, or whether we should be focusing our attention on efficient delivery […]


News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up


There is one comment at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. Ian Simpson APMI Chartered Financial Planner 11th December 2009 at 2:39 pm

    I recall that “trail” commission was never specifically introduced to assist with any ongoing advice,servicing or any other aspect of treating clients failrly. It was brought in by the large Insurance companies and others as a reaction to the consequences of disclosure of commission. The sales of with profit bonds had mushroomed and extremely large upfront commission on offer to IFA’s and others was seen as an opportunity not to be missed. Equally, once disclosure bit, the offer of enhanced allocations given to a sector of the IFA market if initial commission was reduced, increased rapidly the take up of renewal commission.

    Martin Fishburn is spot on with his comments about IFA’s not wanting the task of servicing large client banks, but eyeing the trail commission with far greater vigour. When WP Bonds were in vogue it was wonderful to have a proportion of your overheads covered by trail commission, and it also became a vital element in valuing an IFA’s business.

    Mr Fisher’s claim that he cannot trace clients from whose investments Towry Law receives trail commission is either a damning statmement on his firms back office or evidence that his PR is handled by the same firm which advised Mr G Brown to state he had abolished boom and bust.


    ps Please if you use this do so anonymously as I am currently out of work and don’t wish to strike a wrong note with IFA’s….

Leave a comment


Why register with Money Marketing ?

Providing trusted insight for professional advisers.  Since 1985 Money Marketing has helped promote and analyse the financial adviser community in the UK and continues to be the trusted industry brand for independent insight and advice.

News & analysis delivered directly to your inbox
Register today to receive our range of news alerts including daily and weekly briefings

Money Marketing Events
Be the first to hear about our industry leading conferences, awards, roundtables and more.

Research and insight
Take part in and see the results of Money Marketing's flagship investigations into industry trends.

Have your say
Only registered users can post comments. As the voice of the adviser community, our content generates robust debate. Sign up today and make your voice heard.

Register now

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3712

Lines are open Monday to Friday 9:00am -5.00pm