Anyone with a bank account will know that they can access their cash balances “online”. The generic term for the system which allows customers to bank online is called a platform.
In recent years, the idea of giving customers online access to cash has been extended to stocks and shares plus pooled funds such as investment and unit trusts. There are now about 150 of these investment platforms, all licensed by the Financial Conduct Authority. These platforms have hugely simplified the job of buying and selling investments, dividend collection, paying investment management fees and reporting to HMRC. And the concept has been extended to allow investors’ tax protected investments (such as pensions and ISAs) to sit alongside their general investments – hence the notion of a WRAP platform.
The benefits of online WRAP platforms include :-
A single home for all investments types (including cash) whether tax protected or not.
The ability to benchmark investment performance against indices such as the FTSE All Share
Investment valuations at the press of a button
Transparency of fees and charges
Access to institutional investment funds (the benefit is lower costs)
Easy and inexpensive investment switching
Reduction of paper
Are WRAP platforms secure?
They are. Customers also benefit from protection under the Financial Services Compensation Scheme. The use of fire walls and encryption techniques means that customers’ data is secure and private.
Which Platforms do Hamilton Financial use?
We use which ever platform is most appropriate for our clients’ current and anticipated future needs. Typically, this will depend on the value of clients’ investment portfolios, their financial goals and the tax shelters required. You can follow the link to two of our providers, AJ Bell Investcentre and Nucleus, below:-
Both these platform providers have recently upgraded their platforms, allowing clients to access even more information on their investment portfolios.