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Investor complains about waived fee

An investor who was offered the opportunity to move his money without paying fund entry fees was so upset that he took his complaint to an external dispute resolution scheme.

Wednesday, April 24th 2019, 6:00AM

The client had money in a managed fund that closed in July 2018. The investors were given their money back.

But the manager offered them a deal. If they moved to another of its funds, they could do so without incurring an entry fee.

The investor thought this was unfair and an improper incentive to stay with the manager.

He took his complaint to FSCL, saying there might be better products elsewhere but investors were being unfairly pushed to stay with the manager they knew.

“[The investor] said he thought the fund manager was creating an uneven playing field for investors by artificially making their own investment funds appear more attractive than those offered by the fund manager’s competitors.

"The fund manager thought its offer was fair and reasonable, and it did not think its behaviour was improper.”

After an investigation, FSCL said the manager’s behaviour was appropriate and not unfair or anticompetitive.

“Fund managers are entitled to offer discounts and deals to attract new customers, and they frequently do so."

“We also found that the fund manager’s offer did not create any uneven playing field for investors. [The investor] was given all the information about his fund manager’s offer, and he was free to research the other investment funds on the market. It was up to [him] to determine whether the deal offered by his fund manager outweighed the benefits of other fund managers’ products."

The complaint was withdrawn.

FSCL acknowledged that the line between unfair conduct and ordinary business decisions could sometimes be blurry.

 

Tags: FSCL investment

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