Shuffling money about costs money. The more it is shuffled about the more it costs. And the costs of course are skimmed off the top of the money being shuffled about.


The Telegraph [1] has done a bit of research in this area and found that that so much is being skimmed off that there isn't enough left to properly reward those investors that actually provided the money in the first place. And the total being skimmed off? How about £7.3 billion a year!

A prime example the report quotes is that according to data from the data company Lipper, one of the UK's most popular funds the Halifax UK Growth fund, has returned 7.47% back to investors over a five year period. But the fund has grown by 15.79%. So where has the rest gone? Into the pockets of fund managers and City brokers according to the Telegraph.

The money shufflers of course say that they add value to the transaction for the saver by increasing returns. The only thing they seem to be adding value to is their own individual bank balances.

When someone puts their hard earned into one of these institutions they can expect to pay the money shufflers an annual management charge (AMC) of about 1.2% of the value of their savings pot. Then there will be other charges for 'research', 'back office' and trading.

But as returns from the markets have dropped the charges have increased so as to maintain bank and broker profitability. The upshot being the investor gets hit and hit hard.

Who on earth would put money into a fund via a pension or ISA just to watch the money shufflers get rich? Especially when they tell you they are shuffling your money about for your benefit.

A former New Star fund manager, Alan Miller, told the Telegraph "The time is right for exposure of various elements of the industry. … It is riddled with blatant self-interest and conflicts of interest that would never be tolerated elsewhere. Investors have become victims as the charges they have to pay have risen and risen while the returns they get have been consistently below par and the actual cost of managing their money has continued to fall."

[1] http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/savings/7919778/7billion-a-year-skimmed-off-our-savings.html

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