AUMs grew 41.3% in Q1 despite pandemic–BSP

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ASSETS of trust entities grew in the country in the first quarter of the year, despite the economic disruptions caused by the global health pandemic.

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) reported that the assets under management (AUM) of trust entities in the Philippines grew 41.3 percent in March 2021, bringing industry AUM to P4.6 trillion.

The BSP said the growth in the industry was driven by unit investment trust funds (UITFs), which expanded by 59 percent during the same period.

BSP Governor Benjamin Diokno said the online accessibility of UITFs contributed to their growth during the period.

“The notable growth in UITFs is a welcome development. The BSP recognizes the importance of UITFs as an avenue for small retail investors to participate in the securities markets,” Diokno said.

The governor also said the stable growth of the trust industry reflects the “continued confidence of investors in the fund and asset management business in the country.”

Several additional policy reforms are anticipated for the sector, under what is known as the “Trust Business Model Initiative,” the BSP said.

“These amendments aim to rationalize the operations of trust entities, provide an enabling regulatory environment conducive for financial innovation and growth of the trust industry, and encourage trust entities to be more responsive to the needs of the investing public,” the governor said.

Among the upcoming issuances include comprehensive investment guidelines for trust entities, enhancements to the onboarding and client suitability assessment processes, and guidance to better align the management of UITFs with international standards. 

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