New rules for classifying investment funds have moved closer with the news that FEFSI - the pan-Euro...
New rules for classifying investment funds have moved closer with the news that FEFSI – the pan-European equivalent of the IMA – and the European Fund Categorisation Forum have decided to work together.
The deal is important because it brings to the EFCF the backing of the national associations which make up FEFSI's membership, and by association some 900 companies managing about 40,000 funds with assets of some 5trn euros.
One fly in the ointment is the lack of a precise timetable for implementing the new classification scheme.
FEFSI secretary general Steffen Matthias says this is because the issue is "as you can imagine, incredibly complex."
A spokeswoman for the EFCF says the scheme is "a work in progress" that is not working to a specific deadline.
Whenever the scheme is adopted, it is set to apply equally to funds offered for sale to retail and institutional investors in the UK, currently classified according to IMA sectors.
However, changes to the classification of investment funds should pose no great problem for those relying on existing IMA sectors.
A spokesman for the IMA says the new scheme will add another layer of classification rather than replace the current sector classification.
He echoes Matthias' comments by saying the complexities of negotiating myriad national classification schemes means the process is likely to take a long time.
In the meantime, the interests of IMA members that also do business in other European markets besides the UK are being represented in the EFCF by asset managers such as Schroders and Threadneedle, as well as ratings companies Morningstart and Standard & Poor's.
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