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Wealth Management Consulting

Wealth Management

The wealth management sector is going through a significant period of change and challenge. Pension legislation changes, changing markets and the rise of technology offerings linked to the likely outcomes of the Financial Advice Market Review. There will undoubtedly be pressure on firms to amend the way in which they do business in order to adapt to market changes.

Challenge: Changing Regulation

Regulatory change has been at, or near, the top of most wealth management board agendas in recent times. The cost of implementing regulatory change is significant and the ongoing compliance requirements can be onerous for smaller firms with limited resource. The Retail Distribution Review presented a step change in the regulation of wealth management and the upcoming implementation of MiFID II is likely to be equally significant in its broad scope and impact on all areas of a business, from dealing and commissions to transaction reporting and investor disclosures. The extension of the Senior Manager and Certification Regime in 2018 is also likely to require significant resource input from firms.

Challenge: Conduct Risk

Ensuring good outcomes and that client needs are being met is one of the principle aims of the regulator and there has been significant focus on different conduct areas in recent years, including suitability of advice, culture and remuneration. The focus of attention on suitability has been noticeable but other areas such as TCF, complaints handling and conflicts of interest have grabbed the regulator’s attention. This focus has resulted in a significant operational, technological and operational challenge for firms to ensure that appropriate standards are maintained, that documentation is maintained and that governance arrangements are robust.

Challenge: Technology and complex products

Fintech has been a significant disrupter to financial services since the financial crisis and this is no more noticeable than in the wealth management sector. The advent of technological solutions to help meet clients’ investment needs presents a significant challenge to business models. Coupled with a very different economic environment (with significantly lower interest rates) since the financial crisis in 2008, there is greater pressure to deliver returns while maintaining existing operating models.

Our solution

We can help firms to manage risk and regulatory driven change and operational transformation across their businesses. Our team of highly experienced financial services compliance professionals is complemented by the extensive range of financial services and other legal professionals within Eversheds Sutherland and together we can assist firms to navigate through the every changing regulatory landscape.

We have deep expertise in advising wealth management firms on their governance and risk management structures as well as conduct outcomes, on meeting FCA authorisation requirements and developing a sound compliance culture that can give the board comfort that the firm is well placed to meet risk and regulatory challenges. We understand the frustrations and challenges that firms face and can provide practical guidance and support, underpinned by a firm legal basis, to ensure that firms reach a business solution that works for both them and their clients.

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