Collective Investments

RBS Sale and Blackrock Smaller Companies AGM

The Government is selling off another tranche of its holding in the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS). By selling another 8% it will reduce its holding to 62% of the company. The Government (or “taxpayers” as some described them) will face a loss of about £2 billion on what it originally paid for the shares. There were howls of protest from some politicians. John McDonnell, shadow chancellor, said “There is no economic justification for this sell-off of RBS shares. There should ...

Should Trust Managers Attempt to Unseat the Board in a Dispute over Fees?

Investment trust directors should be independent of the manager. But sometimes the latter appear to think otherwise. Such is the case at Invesco Perpetual Enhanced Income Ltd (IPE), an investment company that invests in high yield bonds and other assets. It is managed by Invesco Perpetual. The latter have resigned as fund manager after a dispute over fees it is alleged. They have now also requisitioned a general meeting of the company to remove the trust’s Chairman, Donald Adamson, and director ...

Sustainable Finance Action Plan

ShareSoc welcomes the actions proposed by the European Commission which should bring about more transparency for investors and favour sustainable long-term value creation for end-investors and savers. ShareSoc is...

Hargreaves Lansdown and Fund Charges

Phil Oakley of Sharescope wrote a good piece on Hargreaves Lansdown (HL) in his weekly roundup published on 16th February. Why are they so profitable a business when, as Terry Smith said, they seem to be in essence a “distributor” operating in a highly competitive field with few barriers to entry? The answer, apart from their high-quality customer service, is the level of charges they make on investment in funds (unit trusts and OEICS, not investment trusts which are treated as ...

The belly of the beast – Con Keating and the Investment Association

I am not a great fan of the Investment Association, the trade body that represents UK investment managers. Its 200 members collectively manage over £6.9 trillion on behalf of clients in the UK and around the world. Regular readers will recall my pleasure when Chris Sier was appointed to improve the disclosure of fund manager fees, https://www.fnlondon.com/articles/an-audience-with-chris-sier-the-fcas-new-pit-bull-on-fund-fees-20170804 and my displeasure when the Investment Association were asked by HM Government to maintain the naughty register of companies with more than 20% of their ...