What is a Managed Portfolio Service MPS Fund?

Published / Last Updated on 16/04/2024

A Managed Portfolio Service (MPS) fund is something that has become very popular with investment firms, financial advisers and clients over the last few years.  So what are MPS funds?

All fund managers have a portfolio definition or a mandate to manage a particular fund in a particular way.  The fund manager is not allowed to deviate from the mandated terms of the funds objectives.  For example a Japanese Small Companies Fund will be investing in UK FTSE 100 companies and a Emerging Markets Fund will not usually be invested in developed markets such as the USA, UK, Europe and Japan.

The same can be said for a Managed Portfolio Service fund.  It is a fund that has been mandated by the investment firm to allow the fund manager the discretion to invest in areas within the fund’s remit to try and achieve growth.  The fund manager is allowed to make asset allocation decisions as well as individual company share purchase decisions within its remit and with the help or a team of analysts and researchers behind them.  They are glorified discretionary funds.

The fund manager will have the discretion to invest across a wide range of continents, sectors, asset classes, shares and bonds (with their mandate) to try and achieve their mandated fund targets for growth.  They are truly trying the manage and balance the fund for you.

This is unlike say the Japanese Smaller Companies Fund manager that must invest in Japanese smaller companies only to try and achieve growth.

Financial Advisers Use MPS as a ‘Cop Out’

  • We rarely use MPS funds as we charge our clients an ongoing fixed fee (based upon the number of policies) to advice them on markets, tax changes, the economy and individual funds to try and get growth.  With us you will likely get one of two fund recommendation changes each year.
  • Many other financial advisers charge a % of your wealth for ongoing advice yet they then give you an MPS fund or a range of MPS funds meaning they are not actually doing an ongoing advice management for you and likely at your next annual review, you will keep the same MPS fund as it is within your risk profile.  1% pa of your wealth as a charge by your financial adviser (and they are not actually managing your fund investment choices) let alone the fund managers charge on top?

Charges on MPS

You can expect to pay a little more with an MPS fund of between 0.1% - 0.3% pa on top of the normal annual fund management charge of say between 0.6% - 1.0% pa.  This may not seem a lot but 0.2% of a £400,000 pension pot is some £800, when we currently charge £551 for a 1 X policy Money MOT Gold service review. 

Just one Fund Manager?

We are not saying one service is better than the other, but you are solely reliant on the fund manager of that MPS rather than having a range of funds and fund managers (with an advised portfolio).  To combat this risk, some pension and nvestment firms might offer the following range of MPS funds so that you can access a range of MPS risk profiles and managers:

  • Cautious – say with a risk profile of no risk to low risk and volatility of +/-5% pa.
  • Cautious Balanced – say with a risk profile of low risk and volatility of +/-10% pa.
  • Balanced – say with a risk profile of low risk to medium risk and volatility of +/-15% pa.
  • Balanced Growth – say with a risk profile of medium risk and volatility of +/-20% pa.
  • Managed Growth – say with a risk profile of medium risk to high risk and volatility of +/-25% pa.
  • Adventurous Growth – say with a risk profile of high risk and volatility of +/-30% pa.

There are also ‘multi-manager’ funds available where you can select funds from a range of different investment houses and MPS managers.

Managed Portfolio Services have a place for those that prefer to ‘park the bus’ and leave it to a fund manager long term but do not then pay a financial adviser an ongoing % pa simply to leave you invested in the same MPS fund.

Contact  Call Back  Calculators  Our Fees

Related Videos

Videos Channels

Explore our Site

Money MOT
T and C