China approves more investment advisory licences

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The regulator has approved five asset managers for onshore investment advisory services, continuing the shift from product sales-orientation to service-orientation.

The five asset managers granted licences for investment advisory by the China Securities Regulatory Commission are China AMC, E Fund Management, Harvest Fund Management, China Southern Fund and Zhong Ou Asset Management.

“The services now permitted include tailoring investment options for clients based on their financial status and financial management needs. Investment managers could help customers obtain long-term benefits through continuous optimisation of the portfolio,” according to a statement from China AMC.

“From the perspective of the industry’s development, money market funds have guided the transition from savings to cash management. The next step would be the transition from cash management to investment management,” Li Yimei, general manager of China AMC, said in the statement.

“In the process, investment consultants will take the responsibility. The investment advisory service means that mutual funds will shift from product sales-orientation to service-orientation and focus on the interests of customers,” Li added.

The firm also said it has around 100 investment advisors and an investor with only RMB 500 ($70) can use the service.

A spokesman for China Wealth Management, the wholly owned subsidiary of China AMC, said it developed the “Charlie Intelligent Investment App” in January last year, which was a preliminary move in preparation for the investment advisory service qualification.

According to the spokesman, the updated app offers investors 10 types of portfolio strategies and 10 standardised investment advisory portfolios, most of which are provided by third-party asset managers . The spokesman also added that “the service is for both retail and professional investors as professional investors may have liquidity concerns”.

In 2016, China allowed foreign asset managers with PFM WFOE structures to provide investment advisory services onshore. Neuberger Berman and Fullerton have so far obtained licences to provide these services, FSA reported earlier.

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