Robo-advice review service launched

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Advisers will have access to independent reviews of 20 robo-advisers through a new service from the Finance and Technology Research Centre.

The service, called Digital Wealth Insights, will add a further five to 10 reviews of robo-advisers each month.

The 20 firms are broken down into non-advised investment, advised investment, personal financial managers, and microsavings tools.

There are two levels of reporting available through the website – a free report on each proposition and a more comprehensive report available to subscribers.

The robo-advisers are analysed according to categories including pricing, target audience, strengths and areas for improvement, products, functionality, and investment vehicles.

F&TRC also gives each offering a “heart-rating” ranging from one to five based on a subjective perspective on how their analysts feel about each organisation’s potential to transform the way people manage their money.

F&TRC director Ian McKenna says: “There is a wealth of research in this area but the challenge is that because of the diversity of propositions it is very hard to compare these services consistently, as so many services are trying to do different things.

“To address this challenge, we started by creating a clear model of all the different types of services and the key components in each one. Using our model, we can produce more effective comparisons which can highlight the differences between various offerings.”

He adds: “Importantly, we have also added our own opinions on the overall impressions the proposition left on us. There are many new offerings that have huge potential but haven’t quite realised it yet, although with time and investment they may do so.

“We wanted to recognise this potential in a way that objective metrics can’t always highlight. The size of this sector is vast and growing so we have started with a summary of some big players and also some exciting smaller ones and will grow the analysis month on month.”