Professional ClientThe majority of those interested in WisdomTree products will be Professional Clients. By selecting ‘Professional Client’, you affirm that you are, and we will treat you as, a Per Se Professional Client as defined in the glossary of the FCA Handbook. In order to be categorised as a Per Se Professional Client, you should be either i) a regulated entity (authorised or regulated to operate in the financial markets); ii) a ‘large undertaking’ (meeting certain size criteria set out by the FCA); iii) a government entity (a national or regional government, a public body that manages public debt, a central bank or a supranational institution); or iv) an investor whose main activity is to invest in financial instruments or designated investments.
Elective professional clientBy selecting ‘Elective Professional Client’, you affirm that you wish to be treated as an Elective Professional Client as defined in the glossary of the FCA Handbook. In order to be categorised as an Elective Professional Client, you are required to meet certain criteria set out by the FCA, and we may need to assess these criteria with you to ensure that they are met to our satisfaction.
If you are not classified under either of the other two categories, we will categorise you as a retail investor. You are welcome to view the contents of this website and to register your details so we have a record for the future, however currently we do not send materials directly to retail investors.
The Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (“MiFID”) adopts two main categories of client: retail and professional. There is a separate category, eligible counterparty, for a limited range of businesses. If you are not an eligible counterparty or professional client then you are a retail client by definition. MiFID gives the greatest protection to retail clients, a good level of protection for professional clients and the least protection to eligible counterparties.
A professional client possesses the experience, knowledge and expertise to make their own investment decisions and to properly assess the risks being undertaken. A professional client will be either a per se professional client (see below), or an elective professional client (a client who chooses to be treated as a professional client, who is able to make investment decisions and understand the risks involved in those investment decisions, and who meets certain criteria set out by the FCA).
Each of the following is a per se professional client:
- An entity required to be authorised or regulated to operate in the financial markets. The following list includes all authorised entities carrying out the characteristic activities of the entities mentioned, whether authorised by a European Economic Area state or a third country:
- a credit institution;
- an investment firm;
- any other authorised or regulated financial institution;
- an insurance company;
- a collective investment scheme or the management company of such a scheme;
- a pension fund or the management company of a pension fund;
- a commodity or commodity derivatives dealer;
- a local (generally, a member of a futures/options exchange);
- any other institutional investor;
- A large undertaking meeting two of the following size requirements on a company basis:
- net assets of at least €20,000,000;
- net turnover of at least: €40,000,000;
- own funds of at least: €2,000,000;
- A large undertaking in the UK that, together with other companies in its group, meets two of the following size requirements:
- net assets of at least €12,500,000;
- net turnover of at least: €25,000,000;
- an average number of employees during the year of at least 250;
- A large undertaking in the UK that is:
- a company and, together with other companies in its group, it has net assets of at least £5,000,000;
- a partnership or unincorporated association which has (or had in the last two years) net assets of at least £5,000,000;
- a trustee of a trust (other than an occupational pension scheme, SSAS, personal pension scheme or stakeholder pension scheme) which has (or had in the last two years) assets of at least £10,000,000 calculated by aggregating the value of the cash and designated investments forming part of the trust’s assets, but before deducting its liabilities;
- a trustee of an occupational pension scheme or SSAS, or a trustee or operator of a personal pension scheme or stakeholder pension scheme where the scheme has (or had in the last two years) at least 50 members and assets under management of at least £10,000,000;
- a local authority or public authority.
- A national or regional government, a public body that manages public debt, a central bank, an international or supranational institution (such as the World Bank, the IMF, the ECP, the EIB) or another similar international organisation;
- Another institutional investor whose main activity is to invest in financial instruments or designated investments. This includes entities dedicated to the securitisation of assets or other financing transactions.
Please note that the above summary is provided for information purposes only and is not a comprehensive description of the appropriate regulations. If you are uncertain as to whether you can both be classified as a professional client under the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive then you should seek independent advice.