Carte blanche: FundsTV strives to finally connect the asset management sector with individual investors in a meaningful way, says Rana Hein-Hartmann.
A quarter of millennials will live until they are 105. But they are only saving enough to live until they are 75. At the other end, the most senior of us have recently seen our defined contribution pensions cease to exist; they became too expensive for our employers to keep topping up. We now live in a world of 0% interest, possibly even negative interest (yes, now the bank can start charging you for holding your money). The traditional savings account is not enough to ensure the value of our money grows anymore.
On top of a huge retirement shortfall, we are all living longer. We are sleepwalking right into a collective nightmare, which will only hit us once we are old and there is nothing more we can do about it. And it’s not just the young. Most people of any age don’t feel secure about pensions: will the money saved in their pension actually be there when they finally do retire? After what has happened in the finance sector, can we really blame them?
The asset management industry--which pools money into certain investment areas to produce much larger returns for investors--is the only way we can plug this gap. But a sea of problematic, sometimes fearful, communication has led to the industry barely speaking with its end investors at all. Most funds never talk to the people whose very money they hold.
Regulation has gone so far that the fear that they will not be appropriately understood prevents them from doing so. Industry jargon--terms that we all use, but which mean nothing outside of the sector--makes us seem unfriendly, unapproachable, but more importantly, irrelevant to the world today. This could not come at a worse time.
This is why we launched FundsTV on 29 February. It will attempt to explain in clear terms how investment funds are linked to pensions, how we deliver value, and how it all works. We are a group of volunteers from the sector itself who feel it is important to open the dialogue with the people outside it, and that’s you. We want to broaden the understanding of the fund management industry and turn the fear back into trust again.
This is the first site for top leaders to share ideas, in a jargon-busting, straight talking kind of way. It is not investment advice; it’s education and conversation. And it won’t be all one-sided. We will talk about the good, the bad and the ugly. But at least we will be honest. This is a philanthropic platform--think TED--with a thought leadership edge.
Our videos will never be more than 15 minutes, and our articles no longer than a page. You will understand the power of your pension in 15 minutes. You could learn why so many investment funds are located in Luxembourg in less than 10. You will see why our capital cities wouldn’t exist today without the power of real estate funds. None of this fancy stuff happens without you guys. So check us out.