Our Weekly Newsletter
Across Instinctif Partners’ Financial Services team, we are always keeping an eye on the key developments taking place across the sector to evaluate their impact on the many businesses we work with. Here we share our picks of the week’s most interesting news, and our expert views.
Founders to keep more voting rights under plans to kickstart London IPOs
The Financial Conduct Authority has laid out plans that will permit founders to retain more voting rights in companies seeking to list on the top tier of London’s stock market. In a bid to attract leading tech groups, the new proposals will allow more dual class shareholdings, which give certain shareholders greater voting rights than others. The watchdog is aiming to reverse a long-term decline in listings and help London compete with thriving overseas centres such as New York, Hong Kong and Shanghai. (From Financial Times, 5th July 2021)
One in three middle-aged people face bleak retirement as pensions fall short
Nearly one in three people aged 40-55 are saving inadequate sums and will achieve only a minimum standard of living in retirement, according to research by the International Longevity Centre for Standard Life. One in four will rely on the state pension or have no savings at all, and 60 per cent of those aged 40-55 with defined contribution pensions are running the risk of not reaching a modest income in retirement. This follows middle-aged savers missing out on auto-enrolment in their early careers, and final salary pensions being replaced by smaller defined contribution pensions where workers bear the investment risk. (From Daily Mail, 6th July 2021)
European equity funds back in favour
European equity funds were back in favour in May, which experts attribute to the recent strong performance of European stocks. According to figures from the Investment Association, European equity funds saw net inflows of £101m compared with outflows of £74m in April. This marked the first time the funds saw inflows this year, with a collective £912m withdrawn since January. Comparatively, UK equity funds saw around £571m withdrawn in May, compared with inflows of £51m in April and £114m in March. (From FT Adviser, 2nd July 2021)
Financial Conduct Authority warns fund managers on value assessments
The FCA has published its findings from an investigation into fund managers. The regulator argued that fund managers needed to improve their systems as they weren’t doing enough to justify the fees they charge. The regulator added that most of the 18 asset management firms it inspected failed to meet the requirements of a new fund disclosure and governance regime that came into force in 2019.
(From The Times, 7th July 2021)
House prices dip as stamp duty holiday ends
The latest figures from Halifax show that as the Stamp Duty holiday neared its end, house prices dipped. Commentators highlighted how home-movers will still play a vital role in the economic recovery. Even without Stamp Duty savings, the pandemic has spurred many people to re-think their longer-term living situations. Increased time spent at time in a hybrid working world will mean demand for more space going forwards too.
(From BBC, 7th July 2021)