Investors throughout the UK are counting the cost of charges applied by stockbrokers and wealth managers. An investor may be paying £30,000 extra in charges over 10 years by not shopping around for the best deal. Some providers may appear cheap, but exit penalties mean they may be stuck paying higher fees for years to come.
Investors with Towry are urged to review their investments in light of high charges announced in May this year. The firm has overhauled its charging structure to an eye-watering 2 per cent on investments worth less than £200,000; pushing total first year charges close to 4.60 per cent.
The Financial Services Authority is said to be concerned over “poor firm conduct” in private banking and wealth management. The FSA recently conducted a thematic review of the wealth management sector “which revealed evidence of misconduct, giving rise to potential consumer detriment”.
Barclays received 618 complaints relating to investments in 2011 dwarfing those received by its competitors by some considerable margin. In their defence Barclays were not the only culprits who felt the wrath of investor fury; others include Bank of Scotland, HSBC and Santander. I was also surprised to find Towry in the firing line since they were not a mainstream bank like the others. In fact Towry received a staggering 345 investment related complaints in the six months ending 2010, evoking serious disquiet amongst their clients.