Conclusion, the transformation is far from over

It is only the beginning of the necessary transformation, since:
▪ On the consuming side, fees reduction will remain a main concern, and many Investment Management groups will end up globally implementing the approach designed for the entities having to comply with MiFID II, which could snowball into pressuring non-EU competitors to adopt similar practices. Moreover, since the situation is still not fair across-the-board, as it depends on the bargaining power of the client entity, the creation of a level playing field should be welcome.
▪ On the supplying side, providers and fintechs are reinventing the way research is distributed and priced.
▪ On the regulation side, this requirement is bound to expand to collective funds as well as to other legislations; for instance, in the U.S. market, major Asset Managers have asked regulators to enforce a similar rule (despite the relief from the SEC). Furthermore, even ESMA’s chairman has declared that the increased competitive pressures on Asset Managers in general should lead to unbundling becoming a more standard model. He even went as far as conveying that he is in favor of research to be fully paid from P&L. On another note, he also added that he expects the ongoing pressure on fees to continue, and now on research as well, as it becomes unbundled.