Adviser platforms in UK see surge in trust purchases

Record high in Q1 2021

£368m of investment trusts purchased on adviser platforms in Q1

Demand for investment trusts have led to a record first quarter for adviser platforms with £368m of the asset class purchased, up 22% from the previous record.

The data, compiled by Matrix Financial Clarity, showed there were 1,730 adviser firms and 51 wealth managers buying investment companies between January and March this year. This is the highest number since a jump in Q3 2016 following the EU referendum and the suspension of several open-ended property funds.  

The most popular sectors for adviser platform purchases in Q1 2021 were Global (18% of purchases), UK Equity Income (7%), Global Smaller Companies (6%), Infrastructure (6%), Flexible Investment (5%) and Property - UK Commercial (5%).

Net demand for investment companies on adviser platforms (purchases minus sales) was only £92m in the first quarter. This is still the highest level since Q4 2018.

And looking at net demand shows a different picture in terms of asset classes. By this measure, Commodities and Natural Resources was the most favoured sector, followed by Global Smaller Companies, Infrastructure, Global Equity Income and Asia Pacific.

Nick Britton, head of intermediary communications at the Association of Investment Companies (AIC), said: "Demand for investment companies via adviser platforms began to recover towards the end of last year, and the latest available data shows that this trend continued into the first quarter of 2021, setting a new record."

The research showed that Transact was the most used adviser platform for investment company purchases, with an estimated 43% share of purchases, while FundsNetwork took 14%, Ascentric 11% and 7IM 9%.

Source: PA