Woodford rejects calls to waive fees for suspended fund By Reuters

© Reuters. Woodford rejects calls to waive fees for suspended fund

LONDON (Reuters) – Neil Woodford’s asset management firm said on Tuesday it won’t waive fees for investors in its suspended flagship fund, rejecting calls from its regulator and lawmakers.

“The company will continue to charge the fee as the fund remains actively managed and we focus on repositioning the portfolio,” a spokesman for Woodford Investment Management said.

Andrew Bailey, chief executive of Britain’s Financial Conduct Authority, said earlier on Tuesday that he agreed with lawmaker calls for fees to be waived in the Neil Woodford fund that was suspended on June 3.

“He should consider his position,” Bailey told BBC radio.

“From our point of view we need him now to manage these assets more than ever. His job now is to get this fund back into a position where there can be orderly trading. He has his work cut out now,” Bailey said.

The European Union’s rule on funds limits so-called unlisted or illiquid holdings to 10 percent.

“There is a way round that which he used, which is to take assets to another jurisdiction which can be deemed as eligible,” Bailey said.

“Around about 20 percent of the Woodford Fund was in unquoted assets. A bit under 10 percent was held in the UK, and about 11 percent was moved to another jurisdiction. That was within the rules,” Bailey said.

Four of the Woodford equity income fund’s investments were listed in Guernsey in the last three years, allowing the fund to classify them as listed.

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