Schroders signs deal with ABN

Schroders has joined forces with ABN
AMRO to distribute its funds through the Dutch bank’s retail and
private banking network.

The firm has already added 12 sub-funds of its
International Selection Fund and one sub-fund of its Alternative
Solutions to ABN AMRO’s platform. ABN AMRO investors will now have
access to Schroders’ funds across a range of sectors including
emerging markets, Asian equities, fixed income, commodities, energy
and real estate.

Other funds include Schroder ISF Emerging
Markets, Schroder ISF Euro Corporate Bond and Schroder ISF Emerging
Markets Debt Absolute Return.

“Schroders is synonymous with consistent
quality and strong-performing funds, with 66 percent of our
Schroder ISF funds in the first or second quartile over one year,”
said Fred van der Stappen, Schroders’ head of intermediary for the
Benelux region.

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“We are extremely pleased ABN AMRO has
recognised us in this way and chosen our funds to actively
recommend to its global client base, which we expect will further
heighten our visibility in this important region.”



Clients reconsider UK as
financial hub

The UK’s pre-budget report
maintained the top rate of tax for high earners at 50 percent,
leading more commentators to claim wealthy individuals are being
driven out of the country.

Louise Somerset, tax director at RBC Wealth
Management said many of the banks’ clients were considering leaving
the UK altogether and said the UK’s reputation as a financial
centre was being called into question.

“Maintaining the top rate of tax at 50 percent
for very high earners is sending out the right message, but it
won’t raise much tax,” she said.

“People are reacting by taking steps to speed
up receiving income or reducing their income.

The HMRC, the country’s revenue and customs
authority, also moved to blow the final whistle on wealthy
individuals holding undeclared assets offshore. The HMRC announced
a 200 percent penalty for individuals failing to declare.

The announcement comes after an extension of
the original deadline, from 30 November to 4 January 2010.

The scheme has so far suffered from a low
take-up, with fewer than 10,000 coming forward.



Tenon launches wealth
management platform

Tenon, an accounting and business
services group, has launched a wealth management platform called
Tenon Wealth.

It features seven discretionary managed
portfolios, each with a different allocation of assets, to match
different goals and objectives.

Three of the portfolios are stability focused,
aiming to generate return in a turbulent or falling market. The
other four are growth portfolios that gradually take on board more
risk in order to achieve greater levels of return.

All seven portfolios are rebalanced regularly
to ensure they work effectively and stay true to the original
portfolio objectives and are professionally managed by fund
managers from around the world.

“Tenon Wealth will be a key driver of growth
for our financial services division, and is another step in our
drive to significantly increase both the scale and value of the
division,” said Andy Raynor, CEO of Tenon Group.

“Our investment in this technology will
provide our business with administrative savings, allowing us to
ensure the cost to clients is as competitive as possible,” said
Peter O’Sullivan, head of financial services at Tenon Group.



Mirabaud tiptoes into Spanish

Mirabaud, the Geneva-based private
bank, has bought a minority stake in the Spanish brokerage and
research group Venture Finanzas.

The move comes after both companies
opened joint-venture discussions at the beginning of 2009 and
agreed to work together to facilitate Mirabaud’s European expansion

Mirabaud has already grown its brokerage
business outside of Switzerland, by establishing itself in the
Alternative Investment Market in London and said it would consider
taking a majority stake in Venture Finanzas at a later date.

“Spain is a major European market for our
strategic activities,” said Thierry Fauchier-Magnan, managing
partner and chairman of the Mirabaud executive committee.

“Our goal is to have the venture’s business
activities running as part of the Mirabaud brand within the next
year,” added Antonio Palma, partner at Mirabaud.

“This is an important step in our European
expansion strategy. We have been diversifying geographically since
the beginning of 2000, as well as expanding our knowledge on
different markets.”



SEI: concern over internet

Internet hackers are becoming more
sophisticated in their attacks on wealth management accounts,
according to SEI, the wealth management outsourcing business.

The worrying trend led SEI to hire Tripwire
Enterprise to improve online banking security, involving detecting
changes to IT systems and ensuring they are both authorised and in
compliance with regulations.

The new measures to minimise risk will ensure
security of SEI’s online banking systems and the safety of customer
financial data.

“With Tripwire Enterprise, we have a single
and reportable source with which to ensure not only compliance with
our own security policies, but also to meet the intent of online
banking regulations,” said Corey Moscoe, SEI’s chief information
security officer.

“As the financial industry faces more
regulation, Tripwire Enterprise ensures organisations quickly get
virtual and physical IT configurations into a continuously
compliant state, as has been accomplished with SEI,” said Dan
Schoenbaum, chief operating officer at Tripwire.

SEI conducts its private banking outsourcing
services in 12 countries.



JPMorgan buys ANZ’s custodian
services unit

JPMorgan has acquired ANZ’s
custodian services business, adding more than 100 clients and A$99
billion ($90 billion) in assets under custody.

The deal will boost JPMorgan Worldwide
Securities Services’ presence in Sydney with a significant presence
in both Melbourne and Wellington, expanding its client coverage in
the Australasian financial centres.

“This acquisition is an important part of our
plan to further build on the record revenues and earnings we have
achieved across Australia and New Zealand,” said Rob Priestley,
chief executive officer of JPMorgan in Australasia.

“Building on what is already a strong base,
JPMorgan will be the only firm in the local market that can offer
the full range of custody services, including global, local,
sub-custody and fund administration services,” added Jane Perry,
chief executive officer of JPMorgan Worldwide Securities Services
in Australia and New Zealand.