Platforum's View on the implications of Brexit on the retail investment industry

The In and the out of it: some of our views on the impacts of today's Brexit results on the retail investment industry.

Go to the profile of Heather Hopkins
Jun 24, 2016
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It’s worth remembering that while aspects of financial services are international, some parts are very domestically oriented which is the case for much of retail financial services. What happens next is that financial advisers, DFMs and domestic retail fund groups will continue to compete hammer and tongs with each other in what is the largest individual country market in Europe.

We think that markets aside the retail investment industry will return to business as usual while we wait to see how the devolution from Europe progresses. We've shared comments below to provoke thought but we believe that focus will return shortly to pensions and digital engagement – customer needs that we can control better than the markets.

  1. UK regulation continues largely in its current direction.
  2. Uncertainty may continue to weigh on markets and asset gathering companies through the two plus years to secession and beyond. Long term – who knows.
  3. Scottish independence is back on the agenda with implications for Scottish financial services companies. Brass plaques on the move? Scotland might stay in the EU!

Conversely, what are the implications for UK companies operating internationally?

  • Some areas will be difficult to compete in without the benefit of passporting.
  • In areas where we continue to have competitive advantage, we will export those products and services to the EU subject to their rules. MiFID II will still be our headache… but we can deal with that.
  • Some opportunities for international expansion might have to be rethought. It would be nice to take elements of our sophisticated platform market, beyond UK borders.

Pensions

Regardless of possible changes to pension tax relief, flows will continue to pension wrappers – currently 55% of AUA according to our latest Adviser Platform Guide, published last week which is up from 33% before the pension freedoms. This trend looks set to continue as pension assets stay on platforms through retirement. The pension freedoms have been a boon for financial advisers – retirement funding advice is now neck and neck with investment advice in the services they most often deliver (Source: Platforum Retirement Funding Guide, June 2016.)

Where we think innovation is needed is in the ways that firms engage with customers and help them manage their investments to and through retirement.

Digital Transformation

Digital engagement is transforming the way companies connect with customers and the ways that consumers interact with their finances. Our D2C + Digital Conference we will be the first post-Brexit event to cover this.

Whether you voted in or out, what we an agree on is that we all want to deliver better outcomes for our customers.

Go to the profile of Heather Hopkins

Heather Hopkins

Research Director, Platforum

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