New disclosure rules issued by the Securities and Futures Commission for discretionary accounts are seen as a positive move toward increasing transparency for investors, according to industry sources.
Private bank and wealth management clients in Asia are slowly putting more money in discretionary mandates, but they still account for a small portion of assets under management, according to Pictet WM and Deutsche Wealth.
After doubling year-on-year in 2014, the bank’s discretionary business in Asia grew 50% this year, said Patrick Grossholz, Asia-Pacific head of investment management.
Discretionary portfolio management is gaining traction in Asia, but is labour- and cost-intensive, raising challenges for smaller firms, according to Patrick Grossholz, Asia-Pacific head of investment management at UBS Wealth Management.
BNY Mellon Wealth Management launched its discretionary wealth management business in Asia last October and found the key challenge was getting noticed among the crowd of competitors, said Charles Long, head of Greater China.
In Asia, the bank had a dramatic flow into fixed income mandates in the second half due to client uncertainties in regards to the looming US rate hike.
Most fund managers in Asia add value compared to their counterparts in developed markets because they personally visit companies across Asia’s diverse landscape, said Todd James, head of investment services and advisory at Lombard Odier in Hong Kong.
BNY Mellon Wealth Management intends to launch “comprehensive discretionary investment and wealth management services to high net worth individual investors” after receiving approval from Hong Kong’s regulators, the bank said.