Vanguard launches dedicated ETF education microsite ahead of RDR

Dec 17th, 2012 | By | Category: ETF and Index News

Vanguard Asset Management has launched a new educational ETF web microsite designed to help UK financial advisers develop their knowledge of the exchange-traded fund (ETF) market ahead of December’s Retail Distribution Review (RDR) deadline.

Vanguard launches dedicated ETF education microsite ahead of RDR

As RDR looms, Vanguard has launched a dedicated ETF education website aimed at UK financial advisers.

As adviser businesses look for ways to keep client costs down and increase investment control, many will increase client exposure to low-cost passive products, including ETFs.

As of December 31st 2012, all investment advisers are required by the FSA to complete at least 21 hours of structured Continuing Professional Development (CPD) each year.

Vanguard Learning (www.vanguardlearning.co.uk) offers a range of interactive CPD modules, as well as informative and useful tools to aid adviser learning. Advisers can start with a basic introduction to the world of ETFs (what they are and how clients can use them) and build to an ‘ETF master class’ that outlines the different types of index replication methods and examines securities lending, ETF methodologies and possible risks.

Each module includes video tutorials, topical guides and a quiz to help advisers fill syllabus gaps ahead of RDR. Once advisers have completed the online test at the end of each module they will qualify for a CPD certificate based on key learning objectives.

Nick Blake, head of retail at Vanguard Asset Management, said: “The RDR has left many advisers grappling with the challenge of how best to offer value to their clients. ETFs are a hugely useful tool for constructing broadly diversified long-term portfolios, and the number of ETFs available to UK investors is growing rapidly.  However, we find that many advisers want further support in their understanding of ETFs and how best to use them in a portfolio. From a client’s perspective, ETFs are just another way to invest in a stock or bond market index fund, but the underlying mechanics are a little different, and it is important that advisers understand every aspect of this to ensure that they are fully prepared to include ETFs as part of their “whole of market” guidance.”

He added:  “RDR implementation will bring many of the costs and charges associated with investing into the open. This increased transparency about fees will enable investors, assisted by their advisers, to make more informed choices. Vanguard offers a unique combination of low-cost, tight-tracking ETFs from a provider that investors know and trust, and our experience and indexing expertise means we’re ideally qualified to offer advice and guidance in this area.  We hope our new microsite will help advisers feel more comfortable both in determining the suitability of ETFs for their clients and in helping them choose the right ones for their needs.”

A similar series of CPD-approved ETF webinar modules was launched by BlackRock’s iShares in July. See iShares launches CPD webinar course on ETFs for IFAs ahead of RDR.

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