Gina Miller slams new FCA rules affecting fund managers

Written by Oliver Wade

Asset management campaigner Gina Miller has criticised the new rules imposed by the FCA that are designed to help reduce the costs for end investors and improve transparency.

The new rules have made it compulsory for fund managers to annually assess the value of investor’s assets, and appoint a minimum of two independent directors to their board.

Furthermore, in order to assist in identifying a responsible person if misconduct is suspected, the senior managers’ accountability regime, which is currently applied to banks, will also be extended to fund managers.

There are additional technical changes that are being introduced to reduce the “box profit” fund managers gain from investors buying and selling their funds, and also making it simpler for investors to transition into cheaper share classes.

However, Gina Miller criticised the FCA for not doing more to support investors.

“It is shocking how long it has taken the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) to achieve nothing more than restating the obvious,” Miller said.

“They have dealt with important but relatively minor negative industry malpractices, such as box profits, but not the substantive issue of misleading fees through the various distribution channels.”

Miller further restated her intention to consider “legal remedies including seeking a judicial review” if the FCA did not address the anti-competitive fee misstatements which she alleges occur in the industry.

Despite Miller’s criticisms, other fund managers and city figures support the new rules imposed by the FCA, particularly Orbis Investments.

Orbis charges fee from investors when their investment outperforms, but returns the fee if it underperforms, and the firm said it was “pleased” that the FCA decided not to intervene in fees.

Orbis’s Dan Brocklebank commented: “It’s encouraging to see that the FCA remains supportive of innovative fee models.”

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