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November 17, 2017

NatWest becomes the first UK bank to launch robo-advice wealth management services

By Saloni Sardana

RBS owned NatWest has become the first bank in the UK to launch robo-advice services. From 20 November this month, the bank’s customers will be able to make automated investment decisions for paying a lump sum amount as little as £500.

Alternatively, customers can invest as little as £50 per month in a range of five diversified funds each having a different level of risk.

Customers can align their investment to a financial objective. The performance of the fund can then be tracked 24-7 using existing Online Banking login details.

The customers will be charged £10, at a competitive rate capped at 0.6% per annum of the total fund size.

Natwest premier banking managing director Phil Northey said: “At NatWest we are very focussed on meeting our customers’ needs and it is clear that too many of our customers are not able to get the investment advice they need.

Their expectations are also changing. This [the service] will help our customers to get on in their lives and to achieve their financial goals. We’re proud to be the only UK bank offering such a service to our customers.”

The funds customers can invest in are available in the form of ISAs. Hence, customers can invest using their ISA allowance or invest by transferring funds from an existing ISA.

NatWest customers of the service will receive a personal recommendation based on their situation and attitude to risk. The advice is given online, and the recommendation includes how much they should invest, which funds they should invest in and how to best use their ISA allowance.

While the bank has not set a minimum term for the life of the investment, it said: “the service is aimed at customers who can afford to leave the money untouched for at least five years.”

“If the service or investing is not right for a customer, the service will suggest an alternative to investing [and] there is no charge.”

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