ETFs to gain from fee transparency moves

ETFsExchange-traded funds (ETFs) are likely to be promoted as part of a move toward greater fee transparency in Asia. The prediction from consultancy Cerulli Associates comes as regulators in Hong Kong, Korea, India and Singapore consider whether to enforce more disclosure of the costs borne by mutual fund investors. “As the initiatives are aimed at reducing costs for end-investors, there could be further efforts by regulators to promote exchange-traded funds as a low-cost solution to investors, and online platforms, along with robo-advisory channels,” said the consultancy. Fee transparency has become a hot topic in developed markets such as the UK, which in 2013 implemented the retail distribution review (RDR), a set of rules aimed at revealing the true cost to retail investors of financial advice. Cerulli reports that some international asset managers welcome greater transparency in markets such as Hong Kong, which they see as lagging behind developed-market standards. However, some Asia-based managers are opposed to this kind of regulation, believing it is not needed or is inappropriate. These critics, “believe that Asian markets and investors' behavioural traits are different from those of international markets”, said Cerulli. ©2017 funds global asia

Executive Interviews

INTERVIEW: Operational challenges

Jun 09, 2018

Caroline Higgins of Northern Trust tells George Mitton about A-share inclusion, ETF Connect and why Cayman funds predominate in the region.

INTERVIEW: Making a name

Apr 18, 2018

Formed by a merger in 2012, Old Mutual Global Investors was little-known in Asia. Carol Wong, managing director for Asia-Pacific, is changing that. She talks to George Mitton.


SINGAPORE ROUNDTABLE: Optimism versus caution

Oct 23, 2018

The impact of financial technology, developments in Asian passporting and the promise of new markets in Thailand were among the topics discussed by our panel. Chaired by George Mitton in Singapore.

HONG KONG ROUNDTABLE: a long-term project

Jun 09, 2018

Our panel discussed robo-advisers, ETF Connect, and why the mutual recognition of funds (MRF) scheme will take time to develop. Chaired by George Mitton in Hong Kong.