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Our Studies

Research in Finance conducts a wide range of subscription and bespoke research studies as well as off-the-shelf reports.

Below you will find a selection of our established research projects. These span the retail advisory, institutional, private investor and insurance markets.

We are also adept at bringing asset managers, insurers and others together to form new studies to fulfil new goals such as regulatory change, evolving technology and structural industry change. Should you have a new study in mind please contact us to discuss.

 

 

UK Advisory Study 360 - UKAS

The UK Advisory Study or UKAS 360° is now in its seventh year. UKAS 360 continues to be the most extensive and comprehensive research study within the advisory market. It aims to provide investment houses with a complete understanding of four key areas:

1) Investment appetites of key customer segments
2) How investment houses and their peers are perceived
3) How to get the attention of influencers and decision makers in the retail investment process
4) How best to act in order to most effectively and efficiently encourage Investment Adviser (IA) and Discretionary Fund Manager (DFM) behaviour that benefits the investment house

The research aims to give asset management firms insight into current and potential future investment strategies, by the key decision-makers in the discretionary and advisory markets. This study is produced quarterly using both quantitative and qualitative methodologies. It provides a set of relevant benchmarks for changes in product appetite, brand sentiment, best practice and effective communications. There is also a bespoke element where each stakeholder is able to ask specific and discrete questions on a subject pertinent to their strategy.

Respondent fatigue and information overload are a serious problem with most surveys available in this, and any, industry. Additionally, timeliness of information is insufficient in many cases when the research schedule is every 6-12 months. The UK retail market is a fast moving and transitional sector where remaining ahead of the pack is essential. To address these problems, Research in Finance conducts its UKAS 360 study quarterly, with information that pertains to the whole year. The surveys focus on evaluating the performance of marketing and related functions, as well as providing timely feedback on changes in sentiment and appetite in order that marketing time and attention can be refocused, if necessary.

Project Leader

Sven heads up the team responsible for UKAS.

He has been managing the study for the last three years and is your first port of call if you are interested in becoming part of the study.

If you are a current subscriber Sven will also be able to assist.

UK Institutional Market Study - UKIMS

The UK Institutional Market Study (UKIMS) was launched in 2015 and designed to give a deeper understanding of the UK Institutional market and how asset managers can effectively communicate, influence and engage with this audience. The project is a mixture of quantitative and qualitative research, which takes place over a 12-month period, matching the pace and dynamics of the market.

UKIMS has the following primary research objectives:

1) Give an overview of current investment appetite and asset allocation views.
2) Provide a deeper understanding of the market’s media consumption split by platform (print, mobile, web etc.).
3) Gain an understanding of how databases and other information sources are used as part of the decision-making process.
4) Gather the market’s perception of syndicate members, key competitors and leaders in each sector.
5) Give insight into the most effective communication strategies with examples of excellence, including social media and use of “communities”.
6) Insight into the profile of the key decision makers/influencers within the various segments that make up the institutional market.

 

Project Leader

Jack Dominy heads up the team responsible for UKIMS.

Now in its fifth year UKIMS is considered essential to many asset managers institutional business development.

Jack will be happy to assist should you wish to discuss becoming part of the study or should you be a current subscriber he will also be able to assist.

UK Investment Trust Study - UKITS

UKITS is a bi-annual research study launched in 2015 aimed at giving investment trust providers and their boards insight into how the market is developing, the impact of marketing and communication efforts, peer group analysis and potential opportunities to grow the investor base.

Specifically, the research helps UK-based asset managers and investment trust boards to understand the changing attitudes to investment trusts, brand resonance, product awareness, sales and media coverage.

There is a sense that investment trusts do not receive as much attention that they should by investors and industry players. This study aims to help providers and boards better understand and, therefore, address this issue.

Two audiences are the primary focus of the research:

• DFMs/Wealth Managers;
• Private Investors (mostly self-directed).

The team at RiF are often asked to present to investment trust boards.

Project Leader

Annalise Toberman heads up the team responsible for UKITS.

This study has evolved over the last four years and now incorporates an online community aspect offering investment trust providers a unique opportunity to test communications with both wealth managers and private investors.

Annalise will be happy to assist should you wish to discuss becoming part of the study or help if you are a current subscriber.

Retail Customer Interests Study - RCI

RiF alongside a group of leading global asset management firms created the Retail Customer Interests Study (RCI) in 2013. The goal of this research is to gain a deeper understanding of the direct customer’s motivations when purchasing investment products, through an in-depth, large scale, annual research project.

When the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) clarified its expectations of asset managers regarding the consideration of direct retail customers’ interests, the regulatory obligations made it necessary for fund groups to evidence their efforts.

The research offers insight into how consumers go about making their investment decisions and which methods they use to execute those transactions. It also explores buyer’s investment knowledge against attitude to risk amongst other things. Understanding the needs of this sector of the market is crucial to ensure that the investment products already in existence and those that may be launched to the market address both the needs of the customer and meet the consumer expectations.

The shift by the FCA to place the emphasis of transparency and culpability with the suppliers has meant that there is an ever increasing demand for asset managers to ensure they are treating their customers fairly and always marketing their products within the “clear, fair and not misleading” directive from the FCA.

RCI consists of a quantitative study of over 1,000 private investors, from the most sophisticated to those beginning their investment journey. We also conduct quarterly qualitative studies to explore topical areas of interest such as “value for money”, “trust in asset managers” and “perceptions & knowledge”.

Project Leader

Juan-Mei Banh took on our RCI Project in 2018.

Now in its seventh year RCI is one of RiF’s longest running subscription studies.

RCI incorporates quarterly topical studies with a large quantitative tracking element.

For further information on how RCI can be integrated into your businesses TCF and Value Assessment please contact Juan-Mei.

UK Insurance Investment Study - UKIIS

In early 2020, Research in Insurance is teaming up with parent company, Research in Finance to launch The UK Insurance Investment Study (UKIIS).

This project will provide a deeper understanding of the investment strategies within the asset side of UK general insurance companies. How asset managers can effectively communicate, influence and engage with this audience.

UKIIS will launch with qualitative research gathering in-depth insight from senior decision-makers within the investment divisions of the leading UK general insurance companies.

There is an opportunity for a limited number of stakeholders to be involved and help shape this influential study.

Key Objectives

UKIIS has the following primary research objectives:

  • Give an overview of current investment appetite and asset allocation views.
  • Provide a deeper understanding of the market’s media consumption split by platform (print, mobile, web etc.).
  • Gain an understanding of how databases and other information sources are used as part of the decision-making process.
  • Gather the market’s perception of syndicate members, key competitors and leaders in each sector.
  • Give insight into the most effective communication strategies with examples of excellence, including social media and use of “communities”.
  • Insight into the profile of the key decision makers/influencers within the various segments that make up the insurance asset risk (investment) market.
  • Identification of the opportunity: Which insurers and teams have a ‘For Profit’ element within their asset balance sheet? Which are looking for third-party managers, and is there a need for specialist bespoke investment opportunities even within the largest insurers who have in-house managers?

Project Leader

Phil Davison the Managing Director of Research in Insurance is leading this ground-breaking study.

Few individuals have a better handle on the needs of the UK Insurers having spent 20 years working closely with them.

For information on UKIIS do drop Phil a note to discuss in more detail.

UK Responsible Investing Study - UKRIS

Research in Finance’s UK Responsible Investing Study 360 was formed after research conducted when producing the Responsible Investment Review 2019, indicated a growing need for a regular study in this increasingly critical area.

This study focuses squarely on professional investors, retail and institutional, and their view of ESG and responsible investments.

This biannual subscription study is truly one of a kind, and has gathered support from many asset management firms in its inaugural wave.

UKRIS answers the following crucial questions for asset managers:

  • What is the awareness and level of understanding around the term ESG? What about ‘responsible’ or ‘sustainable’ investing? And actual take-up?
  • What benefits of ESG most resonate with professional investors? How can we incorporate these in our messaging?
  • What is the market’s perception of our brand? Are we known for ESG? Who are the competitors to watch?
  • How are asset managers’ ESG credentials being assessed? How can we influence how the market perceives our own capabilities in this area?
  • Which firms are seen to be leading in ESG integration, sustainable funds, positive impact strategies, ethical funds? What is informing these views?
  • What does the market think of my ESG messaging? How could my thought pieces, videos and event content be improved?
  • Aside from climate change, which ESG issues resonate? What areas are likely to be important in the future? Where can asset managers offer points of differentiation?
  • Within the advisory market, to what extent are they aware of or using DFM responsible investment services?

Project Leader

As lead author of our Responsible Investment Review report, Annalise has an excellent understanding of all things ESG across all our audiences.

It is essential asset managers understand how to stand out in this critical area.

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