Costs and Charges – are we there yet?

Online symposium using interactive Zoom. 

Wednesday, June 3rd, from 1:00pm until 4pm, UK time

With much thanks to our event sponsors:

Other sponsorship opportunities available – please get in touch

All places need to be booked in advance, please

Use the button below to book your place.

Once your place is secured, you will be automatically Emailed the details you need to access the event through interactive Zoom – please be sure to enter your Email address correctly. 

For any queries please contact us.

Executive Summary

This event is inspired by the idea that despite ten years or more of activity around the issue of costs and charges in the pensions and investments space, we are still a long way away from investors – both institutional and retail, having access to the clear and intelligible information they need. 

Without suitable information on costs and charges, it is not possible to make sufficiently informed decisions; and the bottom line is that opacity on costs and charges continues to drive out sub-optimal outcomes. Ultimately, this means poorer returns than might otherwise might be the case. 

Our message is not that minimum costs are best – there are many reasons why the cheapest option may not be the best option. 

Our message is that clients deserve to know what the costs are so that options can be considered and benchmarked, properly weighed up informed decisions can be made. 

Why is it taking the pensions and investments sector so long to get something as fundamental as proper costs disclosure to happen?

The Regulators, trade bodies and professional associations have understood the importance of costs disclosure in having a transparent, efficient and fair market for ten years or more. 

So why aren’t we there yet?

If, like us, you want real and meaningful improvements to the way the financial system operates, get involved. 

Our event is one more step forward in galvanising support for the positive, progressive and purposeful finance reform that is desperately needed.

We’ll be considering a range of questions such as: 

  • Are asset managers finding ways to evade transparency under MIFID II and PRIIPs; and if so, is that unprofessional “opportunistic opacity” on their part; or a necessary, innocent and pragmatic response to the shortcomings of the regulations?
  • Are any organisations failing to comply with the rules that are already in place; if so, which ones?
  • Where has the Cost Transparency Initiative got to? – is it stuck in the long grass?
  • Are retail investors getting the clear and intelligible information they need and deserve? If not, what (or perhaps even who?) is preventing that from happening?
  • What are the Trade Bodies and Professional Associations doing to protect the interests of consumers in relation to costs/charges? – is there a tension between them doing that effectively whilst also caring for the commercial interests of their members?
  • Is it safe to assume that the costs data disclosed is going to be accurate; or should there be independent data verification?
  • Will we ever get to “one single figure” to represent costs? – could we ever have “one single figure” to represent value for money?
  • Are we there yet on costs and charges transparency? If not, why not? – Who/what is stopping it from happenning?
  • Are performance fee arrangements gaining traction because they better-align with clients’ interests and can claim they deliver superior value for money?
  • Is the Ad Valorem fee model becoming obsolete?
  • Do Performance Fees truly reward performance?
  • …and more


All places need to be booked in advance, please

Use the button below to book your place.

Once your place is secured, you will be automatically Emailed the details you need to access the event through interactive Zoom – please be sure to enter your Email address correctly. 

For any queries please contact us.

What’s the purpose of this symposium?

This symposium represents one more step forward in our collective efforts to galvanise support for positive, progressive and purposeful finance reform.

Our event is part of a major international initiative about creating an over-arching framework for finance reform. At the heart of that framework for finance reform are the 12 Finance Development Goals that we are developing with the many TTF members around the world. 

We already know that the financial services sector as a whole has a significant reputation problem – the key takeaway from the Edelman Trust Barometer is:

“…at 57 percent trust among the general population, financial services remain the least-trusted sector measured by the Trust Barometer.”

…and that’s obviously a major issue for a sector that has to be trusted to function successfully.

It is clear that there is far too much adverse publicity about the financial services sector; and that it is having a long-lasting and highly damaging effect on the reputational integrity of the sector. 

This is a serious and systemic issue that needs to be resolved.

Our symposium creates a first-class opportunity for a wide range of stakeholders to share their thoughts around what needs to be done; how best to do it and who should take responsibility for fixing what seems to be broken; or at least very badly damaged. 

You can expect to be ‘amongst’ progressively minded and collaboratively minded people.

On the basis that “progress begins with realism” we’ll be we will be running the event as a forum to enable everybody to “say it as they see it” and thereby facilitating the kind of candid yet constructive discussion that is needed to help move matters forward.

We don’t think any one person or organisation has all the answers; and we also think that all answers are worth listening to, so if you’ve got a point of view that you’d like to share, and are keen to hear the views of others, this is definitely an event for you.

Format

We’re in trying times because of Covid-19.

So, it’s time for agility and adaptability, resilience and innovation.

As a consequence, this symposium is being run as an online event.

We will be using interactive Zoom, a highly effective online platform which means we can run this symposium as an ultra-convenient and wonderfully efficient event; all this, without you needing to leave your home or office.

You’ll just need access to a computer with Broadband connection. 

We will be structuring the event in such a way that it will be as engaging and as interactive as we can possibly make it. We’ll  be working hard to create as “life-like” an event as possible, with every opportunity taken to create interaction and engagement.

There will be several presentations with Q&A sessions and even a breakout session where attendees will be able to discuss particular topics amongst themselves and then report back on their findings. 

There will also be an open discussion and debate session towards the end.

All places need to be booked in advance, please

Use the button below to book your place.

Once your place is secured, you will be automatically Emailed the details you need to access the event through interactive Zoom – please be sure to enter your Email address correctly. 

For any queries please contact us.

Here’s the programme and timings, so far*

13:00

Welcome to the symposium, introductions and initial exploration of the main issues; plus about “Why we must rebuild trustworthiness and confidence in financial services; and how we can do it” by 

Andy Agathangelou FTTF FRSA, Founder, Transparency Task Force; Governor, Pensions Policy Institute; former Founding Chair, Friends of Automatic Enrolment; former Founding Chair, Association of Member Nominated Trustees.

https://www.linkedin.com/in/andy-agathangelou-0295311

13:20

Presentation #1, for 5 minutes + 5 minutes Q&A with facilitated discussion, by 

Francois Barker, Head of Pensions, Eversheds Sutherland; Director, Standard Life Master Trust Committee; former Pensions Partner, Squire Sanders/Hammonds

https://www.linkedin.com/in/francoisbarker/

 

13:30

Presentation #2, for 10 minutes + 5 minutes Q&A with facilitated discussion, by 

Stefan Voicu, Research and Policy Officer at Better Finance (The European Federation of Investors and Financial Services Users, of which the Transparency Task Force are proud to be Associate Members); member of the Pan European Pension Product Expert Practitioner Group; former Researcher involved with financial regulation and compliance in Europe; contributor to the 2017 Pension Saving Report; contributor to the Closet Indexing of European Equity Funds project, contributing author on articles and analysis relating to UCITs and IORPS in the field of pension schemes.

https://betterfinance.eu/organisation/who-we-are/team/

 

13:45

Presentation #3, for 10 minutes + 5 minutes Q&A with facilitated discussion, by

Jeff Houston, Head of Pensions at the Local Government Association; Secretary to the Board, Local Government Pension Scheme Advisory Board; former Director of New Business, London Pension Fund Authority; former Pensions Manager, City of Westminster

https://www.linkedin.com/in/jeff-houston-6b335111/

 

 

 

14:00

Short leg-stretch and comfort break, for 15 minutes

14:15

Breakout & Report Back Session, on 

“What are the greatest challenges; and how could they be tackled?” for 30 minutes in total

 – 20 minutes for discussion within the Breakout Group

and 

 – 10 minutes for the Report Back session

Breakout Session Conference Meeting People Signs 3d Animation

14:45 

Presentation #4, for 10 minutes + 5 minutes Q&A with facilitated discussion, by

Dr. Chris Sier, Chairman, Clearglass; Honorary Professor, Durham University; Co-Founder, AgeWage Ltd; Chairman, Fintech North; Fintech Envoy for the Northern Powerhouse; Managing Director, FiNexus; former Chair, the Financial Conduct Authority’s Financial Disclosure Working Group; former Managing Director, UK, KAS Bank N.V. 

https://www.linkedin.com/in/christopher-sier-3108a51/

on “What you can do when you have the data”

Dr. Sier’s presentation will touch on the themes referenced in these thought leadership pieces; and more:

15:00

Short leg-stretch and comfort break, for 15 minutes

15:15

Presentation #5, for 10 minutes + 5 minutes Q&A with facilitated discussion, by

Chris Tobe, Chief Investment Officer, The Hackett Group; Best Selling Author, Kentucky Fried Pensions; Principal Litigation Consultant; Ambassador of the Transparency Task Force; Kentucky Chair, Represent.US; Treasurer Board of Directors, COPES, Inc; Investment Committee Member, DTD Foundation; former State Auditor Candidate, Kentucky; former Columnist, MarketWatch; former Investment Committee Member & Trustee, Kentucky Retirement Systems; former Senior Consultant, NEPC LLC; former President, CFA Society, Louisville; former Director, Pensions & Savings, AEGON Institutional Markets; former Consultant, Fund Evaluation Group; former Portfolio Manager, JP Morgan Chase

 

15:30

Presentation #6, for 10 minutes + 10 minutes Q&A with facilitated discussion, by

Jonny Ruck, Co-Founder & CEO at Scorpeo; former Executive Director and Head of Corporate Event Arbitrage at Nomura International

https://www.linkedin.com/in/jonathan-ruck-24641587/

and

Sander Eijkenduijn, Co-Founder and Chief Financial Officer at Scorpe; former Head of Delta Once Structuring at Nomura; formerly with PriceWaterhouseCoopers

https://www.linkedin.com/in/sander-eijkenduijn-1108b0167/

 

15:50

Presentation #7, for 5 minutes, by

Neil Scarth, Principal, Frost Consulting; Chairman, Kite Edge Ltd; former Portfolio Manager, Deephaven Capital Management; former Portfolio Manager, Trilogy Global Advisors; former Principal – Portfolio Manager, Symmetry Management; former Managing Director – European Equities, ABN AMRO

https://www.linkedin.com/in/neilscarth/

 

 

 

 

15:55

Open discussion & debate, 15 minutes

16:10

Final conclusions; and suggested next steps, by

Andy Agathangelou FTTF FRSA, Founder, Transparency Task Force; Governor, Pensions Policy Institute; former Founding Chair, Friends of Automatic Enrolment; former Founding Chair, Association of Member Nominated Trustees.

https://www.linkedin.com/in/andy-agathangelou-02953113

16:15

Final close

 

All places need to be booked in advance, please

Use the button below to book your place.

Once your place is secured, you will be automatically Emailed the details you need to access the event through interactive Zoom – please be sure to enter your Email address correctly. 

For any queries please contact us.