Believe it or not, 2014 is quickly coming to an end. The next few weeks will be filled with reporting, forecasting and performance evaluations. We’ll take time off to celebrate the holidays and we’ll make goals for the coming year.
Each year the mutual fund industry evolves based on regulations, consumer expectations and other external factors. Back in January, Boston Financial presented what we thought to be the top trends that would drive the fund industry in 2014. We are diligently looking to the future and compiling the trends that will likely impact the industry in 2015. However, before we get to that, let’s take a look back at the trends that have shaped this past year…
- Shifts in Product and Service Distribution Models: In recent years many industries have been actively cutting out the middleman and selling directly to consumers. However, the opposite is true in the mutual fund industry. Intermediaries have gained increasing influence over fund distribution. Read more here.
- Changes in Consumer and Advisor Behaviors/Expectations: When it comes to consumer expectations, the mutual fund industry typically lags three-to-five years behind other industries like retail and entertainment. Proliferation of mobile device use, increased expectations for online functions, and social media all came to the forefront in 2014. Read more here.
- Stepped-Up Regulatory Compliance Oversight: The financial services industry has always operated in an environment of intense regulatory enforcement and policy making. 2014 was no different with state regulatory enforcement, board education, intermediary oversight and valuation policies and practices as areas of focus. Read more here.
- Movement Toward Fact-Based Decision Making: Big Data may be a buzzword that will fade with time, but sophisticated business analytics are here to stay. Businesses will continue looking for more efficient and reliable ways to solve problems, gain an edge, and provide additional value to customers. Read more here.
- Increase in Market Competition: Change is an enduring legacy in financial services. As the competitive landscape continues to shift it is important to think about competitive advantage, strategic partnerships, and regulatory expertise. Read more here.
We would like to hear your feedback. Did these trends meet the mark? Were there other trends that stood out in 2014? What do you think will drive the industry in 2015? Leave your thoughts in the comments.