Our Investment Process is guided by a hundred years of empirical data, decades of academic research by renowned economists and the practices of leading institutional investors.

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Risk and return are related

There is good risk and bad risk. Higher exposure to the right risk factors or premia leads to higher expected returns but is no guarantee of them. Risk is the premium investors pay for the expectation of a greater return.

The capital markets work

The prices of securities reflect the expectations of all market participants. The capital markets are far from perfect, but they do a good job of fairly pricing all available information and investor expectations about publicly traded securities.

Asset allocation and portfolio structure drive portfolio return

The most important factor determining the level of risk and variability of return in a portfolio is asset allocation.

Consistent outperformance is rare

Economic uncertainties, random market movements, and the rise and fall of individual companies mean it is extremely difficult for anyone – including professional fund managers – to beat the market in the long term. There is a significant body of research to suggest that outperformance by most fund managers is down to luck rather than skill.

Costs matter

Costs reduce an investor’s net return and represent a hurdle for a fund. Before a fund can outperform, it must first add enough value to cover its costs. Sadly, the vast majority of professional fund managers fail to add value and high cost is a strong predictor of poor fund performance.

Investor behaviour is a key determinant of long-term outcome

All too often, investors let their emotions get the better of them with dire consequences for investment returns. We expect that planners working with Timeline add significant value by helping clients maintain a disciplined approach, especially in extreme market conditions.

Diversification is essential

Diversification is the principle of spreading your investment risk around. Our investment portfolios hold the shares and bonds of many companies and governments in many countries around the world.

Rebalancing should be driven by market movements

Unnecessary portfolio rebalancing, often arbitrarily timed around client review meetings, damages investment returns. Rebalancing should be driven by market movements to ensure portfolios remain in line with risk parameters and return objectives.

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Our team is always here to answer your questions but to speed things up for you we've compiled a series of FAQs.

What is Control Centre?

This is our digital platform that serves as a one-stop-shop for your centralised investment proposition. All research, due diligence, data (such as fund information, performance and risk) and client-facing documents are available for you to access on this platform.

Will there be a ‘hook in/out’ ability for each portfolio?

Yes. Advisers can opt a client’s portfolio in and out of the rebalancing process.

Can advisers white-label this service?

Yes. Our intention is that advisers can promote their own brand, while Timeline remains in the background, with only brief reference to the company name as required by regulation. For example, a firm may wish to refer to a model portfolio as CompanyNameX or alternatively, CompanyNameTimelineX. Branding is at the discretion of the advisory firm.

Can rebalancing be manually triggered by the adviser?

An adviser can manually remove a client’s portfolio from the rebalancing process. For example, if the CGT allowance has been exhausted during a given tax year and rebalancing is due, the adviser can remove the portfolio from the rebalancing process and defer this until the start of the new tax year.

How are portfolios rebalanced?

We work collaboratively with firms to manage portfolios on platforms, under Timeline's discretionary permission. Timeline uses the following rebalancing strategies:

Risk-tolerance bands: the portfolio is rebalanced when pre-determined thresholds are breached by any asset classes within the portfolio

Rules-based: this approach involves altering the asset allocation based on a pre-defined set of criteria in order to achieve specific outcomes. These criteria must be rules based and supported by extensive empirical data.

Will Timeline Portfolios be available on all platforms?

The service is currently available on 7IM, Aegon, Aviva, Embark, Fidelity, Fundment, FusionWealth, Novia, Nucleus, Quilter, Standard Life, Transact, and Wealthtime. We are currently working to add further platforms, please enquire if there is a specific platform you are interested in.

Is it ‘all or nothing’? Would you offer access to the ESG portfolios for those who didn’t want the whole service?

Firms have the option to receive the full suite of services or alternatively a limited proportion via the modular service. This enables the firm to pay for only what it needs. Please contact us to discuss your requirements.

Will Timeline's fees affect the VAT on the adviser fee?

Timeline's services and fees are separate from the adviser’s. Accordingly, while the fees paid to Timeline by the client for portfolio management are VAT deductible, the advisory fee is typically not.

What is a TAMP and how is it different from traditional discretionary management?

With a TAMP, a financial planner can access a range of services that allow them to offload time-consuming tasks, such as research, portfolio construction, rebalancing, performance analysis and reporting to a third-party. This allows them to focus on delivering core financial planning and behavioural coaching to clients.

Like many ideas in financial services, turnkey asset management programmes (TAMP) originated from the US in the 1980s. Some of the most well-known US-based TAMPs include BAM Alliance, Matson Money, Loring Ward and Symmetry.

The key difference is that TAMPs involve working in a more collaborative fashion with the adviser and provide a wide range of services that go beyond traditional discretionary management offerings. With TAMP, the advisers can contribute as much or as little as they want to the investment process.

How do you collect fees?

Under the percentage AUM (Assets Under Management) option, Timeline will collect fees directly from the client’s portfolio via the platform through which the Portfolios are administered.

Do you consider CGT issues when rebalancing/switching funds or is that the adviser’s job?

Yes. Timeline will notify the adviser before rebalancing or switching funds in case it might create a CGT liability. It’s ultimately the responsibility of the advisory firm and client to decide whether to undergo any changes, so accepting the risk of a CGT liability, or alternatively whether to opt-out of the rebalancing process.

What about custody and tax wrappers?

Custody and tax wrappers are provided by the adviser’s platforms. Timeline’s service is only available via advisory platforms.

What about cash? Is it held with a separate wrapper, or is it built into the portfolio?

All portfolios will have a 2% allocation to cash. Drawdown portfolios can have a higher allocation to cash, but the cash account should be excluded from the rebalancing process.

How does rebalancing work in a drawdown scenario?

For tolerance-driven rebalancing, the cash account will be excluded from the rebalancing. This will leave the cash within the drawdown portfolio untouched.