Cautioned urged in choosing brokers after Bachar

By SHARON WROBEL
April 12, 2007 07:05

Large, local investment houses are raising concerns over the exposure of the general public to smaller firms, in the wake of the changes endorsed by the Bachar reforms.

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Large, local investment houses are raising concerns over the exposure of the general public to smaller firms, in the wake of the changes endorsed by the Bachar reforms. "Injustice would be done, if clients are exposed in an equal way to all investment houses," said Shuky Abramovich, CEO of Clal Finance Batucha Investment Management Ltd. at the first conference on financial planning hosted by Bank Hapoalim in Tel Aviv on Wednesday. Abramovich criticized the small investment houses, which have sprung up following the Bachar reforms, referring in particular to the recent trend of portfolio managers, who are leaving big investment houses to start their own firms. "During a period of highs in the capital market, every broom shoots - everyone generated good yields - but, still, every financial institution should be tested over a period of time. At the same time, quantity needs to be coupled with quality and experience, which requires a big team of analysts and cannot be mastered by a one-man show," said Abramovich. "There is no room in the market for an investment house with less than 10 analysts." Similarly, Roy Vermus, chief executive officer of Psagot Ofek, projected that in view of the high marketing and advertising costs and higher manpower costs, there was a strong likelihood for consolidation among the investment houses in the future. "The Bachar reforms have changed the Israeli investment culture and transformed the investment adviser into some kind of 'guru' facing a wealth of new challenges," said Vermus. Zvi Stepak, CEO of Meitav, recommended tracking a fund manager's record back by at least three to five years when evaluating funds and selecting the most suitable fund manager. "There is not much awareness, in particular among young Israeli managers, that every fund manager is also a risk manager - but for experience there is no replacement," said Stepak.


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