Fund groups have indicated their strong preference for the inclusion of past performance disclosure on packaged retail and insurance-based investment products key information documents (PRIIPs KIDs).
With just nine months until UCITS management companies have to fully comply with the PRIIPs Regulations, a report published by leading fund data and technology company FE fundinfo reveals more than 75% of fund groups would prefer past performance to be shown on the PRIIPs KID in some form, with 41% saying they would prefer it to replace the future performance scenarios entirely.
Under the regulations, the past performance of a fund is not included on a PRIIPs KID as it is on UCITS KIIDs, replaced instead with a range of future performance scenarios. These future performance scenarios have drawn criticism from fund groups and campaigning organisations for being hard to understand and potentially misleading. According to the research, just 5% of fund groups support the inclusion of future scenarios on their own.
The report, ‘Preparing for PRIIPs’, also reveals minimal support for a workaround solution, currently being proposed. This would see an investment product’s past performance presented as a separate standalone document, with a link to that from the PRIIPs KID. Only 11% of fund groups revealed they supported this option.
Mikkel Bates, Regulations Manager at FE fundinfo, said:
“Despite reluctance among several prominent MEPs for its inclusion (arguing that past performance is an unreliable indicator of future results), fund groups are clearly in favour of including a fund’s past performance within a PRIIPs KID. That they are due to replace UCITS KIIDs, which fund groups, advisers and investors have all become used to since their introduction in 2012, is only part of the issue. There is a growing strength of feeling, spearheaded by Better Finance, the European investors’ lobby group, who argue that future performance scenarios are difficult for investors to grasp. Given they are constructed to include different time frames and economic conditions, it is not surprising, especially in the context of the market volatility in the past year.”
The research also found that many fund groups remain unprepared to meet the 31st December 2021 deadline. One in eight fund groups said they will not meet the deadline, with 38% yet to begin PRIIPs KID production. Among the barriers preventing fund groups meeting this deadline were disagreements at policy level (cited by 25% of fund groups) and problems relating to producing and gathering the necessary data required (cited by 23%).