Those firms providing portfolio management services will also be forbidden from receiving inducements. Firms providing investment advice to clients will need to inform their clients upfront whether advice is on:
- An independent basis;
- Whether it is based on a broad or restricted analysis of instruments; and
- Whether a periodic assessment of suitability will be provided.
The proposal will also require firms to look at their staff remuneration policy to ensure that it does not incentivise staff to recommend an instrument that would conflict with the firm's duty to act in investor's best interests.
The effects of these measures on the investment management industry will be wide ranging and will pose significant challenges for current distribution models and pricing structures. Fund distributors will need to assess their clients willingness to pay higher fees for independent advice as well as their acceptance of receiving non-independent advice. The loss of revenue streams from third party inducements will be a major consideration and may force a strategic review of third party fund offerings. However, Parliament's proposal will not produce a harmonised regime, as it allows Member States to apply stricter national rules on inducements that could lead to a patchwork of 27 differing national regimes across the EU – for example, the RDR initiative in the UK and similar initiatives in Denmark and the Netherlands.
For further information, please contact Dee Ruddy.