On 20 February 2019, the Investment Association (IA) published fund communication guidance.

The guidance is part of the industry response to the FCA Asset Management Market Study which highlighted, among other things, the difficulty for customers of knowing what to expect from their fund and how to assess whether or not it was performing against its stated objectives.

The purpose of the guidance is to help IA members implement clearer and more consistent customer communications, focusing on the objectives and investment policy of a fund. The material is intended to assist members in two ways:

  • provide practical guidance in implementing clearer communications; and
  • provide a reference point with respect to evolving regulatory expectations in this area.

As with similar documents issued by the IA, the guidance is not mandatory but sets out ways in which members can address industry-wide issues on the basis of a common framework. The IA views the guidance as a starting point in helping firms deliver consistent language in fund documentation. The guidance will be kept under review and may evolve further following future consumer testing exercises.