Watchdog targets fund supermarkets for reform

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The Independent Online

Hargreaves Lansdown and other fund supermarkets could face a £20m hit after the Financial Services Authority (FSA) yesterday began looking at reforming the industry.

The City regulator proposes banning fund platforms from pocketing commission from investment managers.

The FSA said its proposed changes will help investors "compare the costs of investing through different platforms and make an informed decision on whether using a platform represents good value for money".

A report commissioned by the FSA suggests that for the UK's biggest execution-only providers, such as Hargreaves Lansdown's Vantage platform, the move will cost up to £20m.

Experts said whether retail investors end up paying more or less will depend on whether fund providers and platforms pass on higher charges in response.

The FSA aims to ban commission payments from 31 December.