The UK’s fund management sector recovered quickly from the fall experienced at the outset of the economic downturn and was responsible for a record £6.2tn of funds at the end of 2013 – nearly 50% above the pre-crisis peak.
According to the Fund Management 2014 report, released today by TheCityUK, the private-sector association and industry lobby group promoting the UK’s financial and professional services industry, over a third of these funds, around £2.2tn, came from overseas clients, making the UK a global leader in managing foreign clients’ funds.
The 2013 figures show the sector overall has experienced its fifth consecutive year of growth, increasing 14%. TheCityUK also estimates that assets increased by around 5% in the first six months of 2014, with the full year increase forecast to top 9%.
Chris Cummings, Chief Executive, TheCityUK, said: “The UK is one of the leading international centres for fund management and by far the largest European centre. The fund management sector is also one that consistently generates a significant trade surplus for the UK economy.
“The strength of these latest figures also demonstrates the attractiveness of the UK as place in which, and from which, to do business. While London is central to the UK’s strong international position, other cities such as Edinburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen, Manchester, Liverpool, Cardiff and Birmingham are also important centres for fund management. In fact one third of the 50,000 people directly employed in the sector are based outside of London.”
The report also shows that nearly two thirds, some £4tn, of funds under management came from institutional clients, with retail clients generating a further 16% (£999bn). The remainder is accounted for by private client funds and alternative funds.
In an international context, UK funds under management accounted for 8.4% of global fund management assets, totalling US$146tn at the end of 2013. The US remains by far the biggest source of funds, accounting for nearly half of assets.
While the UK is largely known as a centre for management of international funds, it is increasingly becoming a location of choice for domicile of funds. Of the top five European locations for domicile, the UK saw the biggest increase in assets in 2013 (10.9%), ahead of Luxembourg (9.7%), Ireland (9.5%), Germany (9.2%) and France (1.3%).
Cummings said: “As the leading global centre for cross-border financial services, London and the wider UK are well positioned to capture a growing share of business from international markets which offer the greatest potential for growth.
“TheCityUK welcomes actions taken by the Government to make the UK as competitive as possible for fund domicile and management. We look forward to continuing our work with Government under the Financial Services Trade and Investment Board (FSTIB), our members and the wider industry to extend the promotion of the fund management sector overseas and to help drive jobs and growth across the country.”