After Woodford, where is the contrition from Hargreaves Lansdown?
Surely this is an ideal moment for the investment platform’s chief executive, Chris Hill, to share the “learnings and improvements” that apply to his own firm. “The reality is platform buy lists, especially the Hargreaves Lansdown one, have been key to the fortunes of some fund managers,” he told FT Adviser this month. Woodford’s Equity Income Fund retained its star status until the gates were shut, despite the platform revealing afterwards that it had been fretting since late 2017 about the number of illiquid stocks in the portfolio. But you’ll struggle to get Hill, or Hargreaves the company, to concede there’s a fundamental problem with best buy lists that blur the line between promotion and research. Where, indeed, is the admission that Hargreaves, having prodded many clients in Woodford’s direction, had a duty to ensure governance was more robust than the cosy-looking set-up seen at the Patient Capital investment trust?