With the median Australian equity fund losing 7%in the year to 30 June – the third annual loss in five years – the pressure on fund managers stemming from volatile markets and nervous investors is showing no signs of abating. And this is coupled with structural pressures stemming from:

  • an aging population
  • industry fund mergers, and
  • unprecedented regulatory changes (FOFA reforms like low-cost default funds)

The ongoing negative performance has seen further net outflows from Australian equity funds as investors diversify away from local equities in favour of global equities and fixed income investments (and in particular term deposits) further fuelling the debate about the right balance of equities versus fixed income investment. It is little wonder an increasing focus on reducing costs is changing the financial landscape. In recent times, major players who include GMO and Blackrock have announced fund closures while boutique managers have scaled back operations or quit the market (MIR being acquired by Challenger while Ankura and Lodestar have folded ). Meanwhile Perpetual has restructured its operations, selling some business units and making significant cuts to staff numbers. Companies looking to reduce fixed costs will often consider outsourcing functions such as media/investor communications. The result may not only be potential cost savings, but more importantly, efficiency gains with the appointment of specialist PR firms who have the media contacts and the experienced writers. A common trait of successful companies is their recognition of the value in having a “bank of reputation goodwill”. Building that bank of goodwill does not happen overnight. Clever corporates have invested through PR strategies over

the longer term to develop and enhance their reputation. A company’s reputation is constantly evolving in the eyes of investors and consumers alike. For this reason, it is vital for corporates to regularly visit how they are perceived by stakeholders. Surveys of how companies are ranked in terms of trust by consumers and investors reinforce the importance of a company’s brand profile. Apart from improving financial performance, the most important way a company can improve their reputation is to improve customer satisfaction and communication. And the role that an effective PR strategy can play in improving corporate communication can not be over-estimated. John Hamer Executive Director – Shed Media

August 1, 2012

The Changing Financial Landscape

With the median Australian equity fund losing 7%in the year to 30 June – the third annual loss in five years – the pressure on fund […]
July 31, 2012

Donec At Mauris Enims

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July 31, 2012

Nullam Vitae Nibh Un Odiosters

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July 31, 2012

Proin Sodales Quam Nec Sollicit

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June 19, 2012

ATO report shows SMSF fees falling

17 May 2012: Self managed superannuation funds are paying the lowest fees of any the four superannuation sectors, according to the latest figures from the Australian […]