Hargreaves Lansdown is looking at reducing the minimum investment required to access its advice services from £50,000 to £20,000.
Hargreaves chief executive Ian Gorham told a stock exchange conference this morning the firm is exploring the move which would see lower end clients receive a telephone-based advice service.
Hargreaves head of advice Danny Cox says: “We are looking at whether we could make it a viable business opportunity and the early indications suggest we can.”
Cox said it is too early to determine what the charging structure would be.
The firm is set to introduce its clean fee platform proposition by January 2014 and will look to secure preferential deals with fund managers.
Cox says: “We will offer commission-free funds and are looking to negotiate better terms for our clients. We expect to get a lower price because we are a bigger distributor.”
Hargreaves must have its unbundled pricing model in place by 6 April 2014 to comply with the Financial Conduct Authority’s platform rules.
Cox confirmed Hargreaves’ preference is to charge a tiered platform charge depending on the amount a client invests. It says the lowest price it could charge clients would be 28 basis points in order for the business to remain profitable.
Hargreaves says it is too early to say whether the £2 flat fee it charges for passive investments will remain or whether it will look to charge a percentage of the total amount invested.