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Fidelity is panned for special sits charge cut

Fidelity is under fire for restoring the normal initial charge on its UK special situations without naming Anthony Bolton’s replacement.

The firm has cut the initial charge back to 3.5 per cent after raising it to 5.25 per cent last September to stem inflows on the then 5.4bn fund.

Some IFAs say Fidelity should not encourage inflows without naming a successor to Bolton, who steps down in 15 months.

Chelsea Financial Services managing director Darius McDermott says: “The fund has a huge retail following from the public so it could be up to 4bn in a year’s time. It is irresponsible when we still do not know who will take on the fund.”

Dennehy Weller managing director Brian Dennehy says: “It is interesting that Fidelity should lower the charge when performance is beginning to slip. If it was holding up, people would forgive and forget and move on.

“But Fidelity won’t talk to you about what stocks they hold and you have the shenanigans of who the new manager will be so I don’t think any IFA should be recommending it.”

Hargreaves Lansdown head of research Mark Dampier says: “It may encourage a bit of short-termism but most IFAs won’t have it on their buy list anyway and most people are well aware of the changes ahead.”

Fidelity communications director Richard Miles says: “We can still offer 14 months of certainty of Anthony Bolton running investors’ money. Not many fund houses can give that sort of guarantee.”

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