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Investment research: the progress of price

There is now just over a year until the new Mifid II regulations covering research procurement come into effect in January 2018. The market still has a mountain to climb if that deadline is to be met.


Despite being granted an extra year to implement Mifid II regulation, the research market is still wrestling with seemingly intractable challenges in so doing.

These range from the fundamental – how to get clients to pay and what to charge – to the wide-ranging, including how to establish the value of different research to different consumers of it.

Mifid II requires the full unbundling of research and trading fees by the sell side together with strict conditions around the payment for research that is deemed an inducement to trade by the buy side. If research is of minor non-monetary benefit then it falls outside the rules.

Asset managers must operate research payment accounts through which they pay for the research they consume, but before they can even get into the nitty gritty of how they do that, the two sides have to agree on something first: the price.

At the moment you are only selling first class tickets to a single destination. You need variety in pricing - Jon Foster

Attendees at Substantive Research’s Unbundling Uncovered London conference in November expressed a mixture of frustration at the impending rules and resignation about their fate.

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