Platform sales drop 7% amid Brexit fears


Hargreaves Lansdown, Standard Life and Aegon led platform sales in the past three months, when gross platform sales dropped 7 per cent to £21.2bn.

The Fundscape Platform Report, which details platform flows, shows for the first quarter of this year Standard Life was the only platform to get more than £1bn of net sales through the adviser channel.

The report shows that Hargreaves Lansdown saw estimated net sales of £1.2bn in the three months, while Standard Life’s wrap saw £1.1bn of sales and Aegon clocked up £900m in sales.

The report says: “The Standard Life Wrap continues to grow at an impressive rate thanks to working closely with advisers to understand their needs combined with being able to leverage different parts of the value chain.”

“The strategy is paying off since Standard Life was the only platform to record net sales of more than £1bn through the retail advised channel. More growth is on the cards with the recently announced acquisition of the Axa Elevate wrap.”

Total gross platform sales rose on the fourth quarter last year, but dropped on the same period last year. Total net sales of £9.4bn saw the level drop below £10bn for the first time since Q3 2014.

A drop in Isa sales hit platform flows, as did volatility in stock markets and fears about Brexit and China.

Isa sales dropped by 40 per cent on a net basis, compared to Q1 2015, and were the lowest for a first quarter since 2012.

Fundscape chief executive Bella Caridade-Ferreira says: “ISA activity is likely to improve modestly in the second quarter, but concerns around Brexit will suppress demand. Investment activity is likely to be muted until the second half of the year and even longer if the UK votes for a Brexit. Platforms with a strong focus on retirement propositions will benefit the most this year.”

Fundscape report Q1

Source: Fundscape