Article date: 9 June 2010
Aviva calls on platforms’ chief executives to introduce standard industry-wide approach to re-registration of assets before RDR
Aviva is calling on providers to make it easier for investors to move assets on and off platforms without incurring tax liabilities and being out of investment markets.
Re-registration would, for example, allow investors to transfer assets between platforms without the need to sell and buy the asset again.
Mark Hodges, chief executive of Aviva UK, is writing to chief executives of platform providers calling on them to make compulsory the ability to re-register assets on and off platforms without incurring a tax liability – well before the implementation of RDR.
Re-registration is important because it ensures advisers and customers do not face barriers to changing platform provider, as propositions and clients’ needs change.
In his letter Mark Hodges says:
“….we believe that the ability to re-register assets on and off platforms should be made compulsory. We also believe that this should be mandated as soon as possible, well before the implementation of the Retail Distribution Review.
“We believe that where re-registration off platform is not made available, this should be disclosed to customers at point of sale – and should form part of the FSA review of platform disclosure.
“Aviva is also supporting the TISA-sponsored industry working group in order to create an automated solution to re-registration. As platform operators, we believe it is crucial that we are seen to be working together to remove barriers to platform use for both consumers and advisers.”
Angela Seymour-Jackson, intermediary and partnerships director at Aviva, said: "Platforms’ current approach to re-registration is not sustainable and can result in a poor outcome for customers. While Aviva wrap and Sipp already allow assets to be re-registered on and off, other companies’ propositions allow assets only to be re-registered on to their platform and not off.
“This is an important feature advisers should consider when selecting a platform. They should be asking: does this platform make re-registration simple, and are there likely to be any barriers to changing my clients’ investment solutions in the future?
“The FSA expects the ability to re-register assets on and off platforms to be delivered as part of the Retail Distribution Review (RDR), which is due to be implemented in 2012, while Treating Customers Fairly (TCF) Customer Outcome 6 says customers should not face 'unreasonable post-sale barriers' to changing products or switching providers.
“But why wait until RDR to have a standard approach to re-registration? Platforms should be acting now to make sure the re-registration is simple for investors and advisers.”
The Aviva Wrap launched in January 2010. The platform makes over 1,500 funds available to advisers and customers and plans to have 2,000 available by the end of 2010. It features administration tools including the ability to create and manage investment profiles, bulk re-balancing and switching and the ability to re-register assets on and off the platform without charge.
David Gwyer - 01904 452659 / 07800 693187
Notes to editors:
Aviva is the world’s fifth largest* insurance group, serving 53 million customers across Europe, North America and Asia Pacific.
Aviva's main business activities are long-term savings, fund management and general insurance, with worldwide total sales of £45.1 billion and funds under management of £379 billion at 31 December 2009.
We are the largest insurance services provider in the UK and one of the leading providers of life and pensions products in Europe.
Aviva’s life and pensions business in the UK has a total market share of 10.3%** and a leading position in its key markets of savings, protection and annuities.
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* based on gross worldwide premiums at 31 December 2008
** Source: ABI data released March 2010