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Legal pact could help platforms add funds

Alliance Trust Savings has called for a standardised legal agreement to help simplify the pro-cess for platforms looking to sign up new funds.

Head of platform development and investment trust services Malcolm Dodds says ATS facilitates transfers on and off the platform in specie but says a standardised legal agreement would help platforms add funds more easily.

He says: “Having signed up nearly 40 different fund prov-iders and trying to get that legal agreement through various legal departments, they all have very different views and everyone takes time and things move backwards and forwards. It would be nice to see a standard platform agreement just as much as it would be to see a standard protocol for re-registration of assets.”

Vanguard Investments head of retail Peter Robertson says the market is likely to adopt a standardised agreement if the FSA pushes ahead with its proposed ban on fund manager rebates.

He says: “Half of the agreement is about rebates and if there are no rebates in the future, there will be a great opportunity to standardise things. If there are around 200 fund managers and 20 platforms, that is 4,000 agreements. That is a hell of a lot of legal work so if somebody came up with a standard form, that would make the pro-cess much simpler.”

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