Royal Bank of Scotland to offer customers ‘robo-advice’

Barclays and RBS have emerged as the weakest of the seven lenders.  Picture: TSPL
Barclays and RBS have emerged as the weakest of the seven lenders. Picture: TSPL
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ROYAL Bank of Scotland is to launch a new robo-advice service aimed at customers who lack the confidence to invest alone.

The service is to be rolled out on Monday to more than five million customers of Royal Bank of Scotland’s Natwest brand.

It will allow customers to invest as little as £500 as a lump sum, minus high fees normally charged for professional financial advice on investments, tax and inheritance planning.

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The move to an automated style of service comes after a number of large banks were hit with fines for mis-selling complex investments.

It is hoped the scheme will plug the ‘advice gap’ and encourage customers to invest who would otherwise lack the confidence to do so alone.

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People will be asked to describe their economic circumstances, goals and attitude to risk and will advise individuals accordingly depending on the results.

Using the method, the total cost of advice will amount to 0.095%. The same risk-rated funds will be available as in an execution-only service.

As well as giving advice, Natwest say the process is also designed to provide customers with an investment plan.

The robo-advice concept will also target individuals struggling with their personal savings.

Other large high street banks including HSBC are expected to follow suit and implement their own versions of the service in the near future.