7IM, A J Bell, Aegon, Aviva, Nucleus and Standard Life have been revealed as the six finalists.
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In a year overshadowed by political uncertainty, it is no surprise that investors sat on the side-lines waiting for the storm clouds to clear. But after three quarters of sluggish activity, sentiment improved and net sales rose to £10.5bn in the fourth quarter, the highest since Q415. However, it was not enough to correct the balance — annual net sales of £38bn were down 16% on the £45bn in 2015 and few platforms were able to improve on their 2015 figures.
An extensive analysis of fund shortlists found that the quality of research varies greatly from list to list, and so it pays for advisers and consumers to be more selective about fund selectors. The independent study by Fundscape and gbi2 analysed 36 gatekeepers in four different categories of fund selectors: D2C buy-lists, adviser buy-lists, ratings agencies and off-platform lists.
These gatekeepers influence a significant proportion of fund flows and as a result have the potential to make or break funds whose success in gathering assets may depend on being selected by one or more fund selectors.
Fund ratings and best buy lists are of variable quality with smaller products and providers often overlooked.
Fund selectors should review buy lists for vehicles with “less performance substance and more reputational & sales momentum”.
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