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September 16, 2012 8:03 am
Affluent French and German investors would be likely to oppose any EU proposals to ban commission payments to financial advisers across the entire 27-nation bloc.
The UK is to ban the payment of inducements to advisers from January, and Denmark and the Netherlands have also taken steps in the same direction. This has prompted the European Commission to draft similar proposals to help protect investors against potentially biased advice, despite opposition from the European Parliament.
However, a survey of 5,000 wealthy European investors conducted by Cerulli Associates and Phoenix Marketing International found little appetite for a ban.
Just 28 per cent of investors in France and 36.8 per cent in Germany said they were willing to pay for financial advice. In both countries, far more respondents said they preferred their adviser to be remunerated via commission than by either a fixed fee based on their assets or an hourly rate, with 51.3 per cent in France and 47.9 per cent in Germany favouring commission.
Paying an adviser by the hour is the least popular option, favoured by 13 per cent of Europeans with non-pension investable assets in excess of €125,000.
“In places like Germany, people are used to getting what they consider to be free advice,” said Barbara Wall, director at Cerulli.
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