Pensions dominate sales as platforms attract £55bn in 2017

Tom Ellis writes

The platform market saw the majority of its £55bn net sales flow into pension products in 2017, according to Fundscape’s latest report.

It said almost two-thirds (63%) of industry net flows went into pension and self-invested personal pension (SIPP) wrappers, despite only accounting for one-third (33%) of existing platform assets. ISAs contributed to 15% of 2017 net sales.

Total assets on platforms across advised, D2C and corporate and institutional now sit at around £590bn, according to Fundscape, while about £350m of retail advised assets now sit on platforms, plus £113m in corporate or institutional and £125m in D2C platforms.

It said gross sales in Q4 were almost £33bn, which is the second best quarter on record.

Fundscape has estimated two-thirds of pension assets are in accumulation products and one-third in decumulation, based on figures provided by six platforms.

Last November Fundscape predicted platform assets would reach £1.4trn by 2021.

In the first three quarters of the 2017, AJ Bell had so far seen the biggest proportional growth in assets – up by 25% (£6.3bn) to that point in the calendar year.

This compares with 15.8% (£7bn) growth for Standard Life, 14% for Old Mutual (£6.2bn) and 17.3% (£12bn) for Hargeaves Lansdown’s D2C platform.