Market praise for ETF stamp duty cut

Market praise for ETF stamp duty cut

The UK Government’s decision to abolish stamp duty on shares purchased in exchange traded funds (ETFs) has been welcomed by a trade association and a major ETF provider.

Chancellor George Osborne said in his Autumn Statement on December 6 that the stamp duty cut would come into place from April 2014. The stamp duty currently applies if an ETF were domiciled in the UK.

Helen Forrest, head of policy, UK National Association of Pension Funds (NAPF), said the move will be welcomed by UK pension schemes because it “increases the investment opportunities for some schemes”.

She added: “Interest in these funds may increase post the abolition of stamp duty, particularly amongst smaller pension schemes looking to diversify portfolio risk.”

Mark Johnson, head of UK sales at iShares also welcomed the news:

“This should ultimately increase consumer choice and support the growth in the use of ETFs by a wide range of investors from retail through to pension funds and insurance companies.”

However, some market participants believe the move will not have a big impact on the ETF industry. Alan Miller, co-founder of SCM Private, told Global Investor/ISF that it was a “bizarre move”

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