Fund managers and their fees

The growing international popularity of tracker funds helps to explain why SA investors are paying more.

The SA fund management industry is sophisticated, professional, internationally adept … and expensive. The question is whether this expense is justified and if not, are the costs of investing the hard-earned cents of retirees coming down?

In some ways, the second part of the question is the easiest to answer; costs are coming down and respectably fast. Part of the reason is that the SA industry is tightly bound to trends in the international industry, and the megatrend internationally has been a drop in the cost of investing.

Proceed to Source : BusinessLive

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Rot is killing jobs

The Financial Planning Institute will shed staff through a retrenchment process following the shutdown of its exam unit, which is being investigated because of suspected corruption.

The institution, which is being probed by the Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA), has told its staff that it will be undergoing a retrenchment process.

The institute did not know how many people would lose their jobs. But, it said, the exam section would be closed.

Proceed to Source : Fin24

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Why Novare blew the whistle on the Municipal Councillors’ Pension Fund

Financial service providers have a legal and moral obligation to act in the best interests of the members of a fund.

Successful whistle-blowing efforts are vital in the financial services industry, and all role-players have a responsibility to act should an entity fail to effectively implement regulations and damage the integrity of the industry.

Financial service providers (FSPs), fund advisors, investment consultants and boards of trustees should each act in the best interests of the members of a fund. Pension funds are especially critical to ensuring the financial prosperity and support of many South Africans. It is therefore unacceptable to abuse this asset in any way, mismanage it and not do everything in one’s power to protect other people’s hard-earned money.

Proceed to Source : MoneyWeb

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Municipal pension funds looted

Johannesburg – Shocking widespread corruption, fraud, theft and mismanagement of hundreds of millions of rand at the Municipal Councillors’ Pension Fund (MCPF) has been referred to the Hawks by its curators. It has also emerged that the Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA) blocked the SA Local Authority (Sala) from investing some of its R16billion assets in four companies, after it discovered that proper risk assessments were not conducted. Sala has about 20000 members, who are municipal workers.

Among the dodgy and highly irregular transactions MCPF curators Juanito Damons and Thabang Kekana have reported to the Hawks are the purchase of 11 vacant stands in Klerksdorp, North West, from Isago@N12 Development for R120m, and MCPF’s strange decision to pay about R17m in VAT for the deal, despite the properties being registered in the fund’s name.

Proceed to Source : IOL

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Plans to stop financial advisers ‘double-dipping’

Relationships between investment managers, advisers and platforms leave you open to being given conflicted advice and paying fees that do not match the services you enjoy.

They have also left the new financial services regulator scratching its head over how to define and regulate investment managers and investment advisers, to determine if they are independent and if they are charging for a service that adds value to your investment.

A dense Retail Distribution Review discussion document released recently by the Financial Sector Conduct Authority (formerly the Financial Services Board) gives an eye-glazing summary of the issues that bedevil the investment industry.

Proceed to Source : BusinessLive

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Voluntary retrenchment plan for public sector workers – Test for Default Pension Fund Regulations

Legalbrief Today recently commented as follows on a Business Day article:

Thousands of public sector workers over the age of 60 will be offered voluntary retrenchment as part of an effort by the government to cut its salary bill. A Business Day report says the decision to offer voluntary severance packages – the first such offer in 20 years – follows the conclusion of a new three-year wage agreement last week that bust the budget by about R30bn.

Proceed to Source : Insurance Gateway

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Financial sector regulator zeroes in on credit life insurance

The Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA), newly endowed with powers of resolution, has trained its sights on credit-life insurance.

In a first for SA, the FSCA may direct financial services providers to reimburse consumers premiums paid for products that have been wrongly sold to them or have delivered little value.

Proceed to Source : Business Live

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Amcu targets R7bn pension fund at Amplats

A R7bn pension fund is at the heart of a legal challenge by the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) against the world’s largest platinum miner, Anglo American Platinum (Amplats).

Not for the first time, Amcu — a relatively new union and one which has grown quickly on platinum and gold mines — has demanded the transfer of pension and provident funds established by companies in these sectors into the Igula Umbrella Provident Fund, which it set up.

Proceed to Source : Business Day

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