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What is an investment platform?

I am evaluating my investment options and I am considering using an investment/fund platform, what exactly are they and what do they do?

What is an investment platform?

An investment platform is an online service that enables individuals to purchase various financial products and can often simplify the process of investing in investment funds.

Investment platforms can be used by individuals to make investments, but also are often used by wealth managers and financial advisers to ensure that the investments are held in a single place.

The investment platforms are provided by financial organisations and can offer a wide range of investments, although the exact options will depend on organisation running the platform.

Within the platform, the investor can choose a range of funds, cash, equities, gilts, structured products and hold them in a suitable “tax wrapper”. Within the platform, an investor is likely to find that the funds and investment options that are available differ from regular retail investment options. Therefore, it is highly recommended to seek independent advice before deciding which investments to make, especially if you are inexperienced.

Investment platforms can also help to reduce the costs of investing, although the platforms themselves will charge administration fees.

Unfortunately, not all investment platforms are available for expats and non-residents, so you should always do your research before signing up to any platforms. This is due to the increased complexity in tax and financial regulations involved when living abroad (for example, some tax wrappers are not tax efficient in all jurisdictions, while others are not permitted outside of certain jurisdictions).

Even if you plan to do DIY investing, as an expat it is always sensible to seek financial advice from an independent adviser as they are more likely to be aware of the suitable platforms based on your current and future requirements.

Request a free introductory consultation with an independent adviser

If you would like to understand more about investment platforms, simply enter your details using the form and we will select the most suitable adviser from our network to contact you to arrange your free consultation.

During the consultation, the adviser will be able to answer your general questions and offer advice about investment platforms, including detailing the options you have available.

Last updated: 3 May 2019 at 07:01