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  • Print publication year: 2005
  • Online publication date: August 2009

Case 5 - Insolvency of investment manager

Summary

Case

Roberto is a professional investment manager. He manages assets in the interest of different clients, namely Simon, Rebecca and Ruth. The managed assets are bought with money transferred to him by his clients. Roberto offers different forms of services: (a) individual management services, under which he is to keep separate the position of each client; (b) participation in a collective investment scheme, whereby the assets managed for his clients are pooled and each participant in the scheme will share pro rata the returns on the collective investments; and (c) shares of an investment company (DEF Ltd) which holds investments chosen by Roberto.

One year after receiving the money from his clients, Roberto becomes personally insolvent. Which of his clients is better off: Simon, who chose option a; Rebecca, who chose option b; or Ruth, who chose option c?

Discussion

AUSTRIA

Option a

Professional investment managers, who offer the individual management services enumerated in s. 1 (1) ((19)) BWG, are not allowed to take over money from their clients. The managed assets are deposited in bank accounts in their clients' names. Professional investment managers do not carry out their services on a fiduciary basis, because they are obliged to act in the name and for the account of their clients. They are direct representatives, who are mandated and authorised by the clients to carry out specific investment services.