Fidelity's Personal Investing platform has moved to minimise the impact of D2C super clean fund deals on the end-investor by offering to refund the difference when funds are available cheaper elsewhere.
Fidelity's 'Price Promise' will see the group pay the difference between clean share classes of unit trusts and OEICs if competitors are selling funds cheaper elsewhere, in a move which could erode the competitive advantage that may have been secured by the likes of Hargreaves Lansdown.
The offer, which runs until 31 December 2014 for investors with under £1m in assets, will come into force if investors find cheaper funds on four platforms: Hargreaves, Barclays, Bestinvest and TD Investing.
Fidelity suggested the move is designed to remove the focus on price from the investment decision-making process.
The move will "enable investors to find the right funds for their needs without having to worry about which of the leading platforms is currently offering the best deal on their choice of funds", according to Mark Till, head of Fidelity Personal Investing.
Fidelity has already announced a competitive annual charge for users of its D2C platform, introducing an AMC of 0.35% for clients with total assets up to £250,000.
Hargreaves is expected to secure the best deals in the market from some fund groups when it unveils its new-look Wealth 150 and Wealth 150 Plus ranges over the weekend.
The group has been pushing fund groups to make super clean, preferentially priced share classes of popular funds available in order to replicate deals it enjoyed via rebates for years.
However, Fidelity's bold move to match any deals with a refund to consumers could help it take market share of the country's most popular fund supermarket.
Fidelity said: "We promise if you can find any of the ‘clean' unit trust or OEIC funds (which form the majority of the range on our fund supermarket) at a lower cost with any of our four main competitors - we will refund you the difference.
Customers will be able to claim their refunds between 1 January and 28 February 2015 online, and between 1 January and 15 March 2015 for paper claims.
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