Market regulator SEBI has paved the way for deemed enlistment of existing registered investment advisors/research analysts with any body that may be recognised by it for administration and supervision of these professionals.

For this purpose, SEBI on Friday brought in separate amendments to its regulations on investment advisors and research analysts.

This latest move by SEBI is expected to provide ease of doing business and also ensure smooth operationalisation of the Research Analyst Administration and Supervisory Body (RAASB) and the Investment Advisers Administration and Supervisory Body (IAASB) framework, sources said. This is also significant as in March this year, SEBI Board had approved a proposal to recognise a “stock exchange” as RAASB and IAASB.

SEBI has also now revamped (lowered) the application fees as well as registration fee for research analysts. The fees payable by research analysts to SEBI for keeping its certificate of registration in force has also been reduced. 

Application fees

In the case of application fee for research analysts, the fee has been pegged at ₹2,000 for individuals and partnership firms;  for proxy firms the application fee is ₹2,000 and in the case of body corporates including limited liability partnerships the fee has been pegged at ₹ 20,000.

In the case of registration fees for research analysts, the fees has been pegged at ₹ 3,000 for individuals and partnership firms; ₹ 3,000 for proxy advisory firms and ₹ 30,000 for body corporates including limited liability partnerships. 

For registration extension every five years, the fees has been pegged at ₹ 1,000 for individuals and partnership firms; ₹1,000 for proxy advisory firms and ₹5,000 for body corporates including LLPs.

All these regulatory changes including the  new fee structure for research analysts will come into effect on the ninetieth day from April 26, which was the date on which the changes were published in the official gazette, SEBI has said. 

In India, SEBI regulates the registration of both IAs as well as research analysts. The market for financial advice in India is highly competitive. Registered investment advisors face competition from traditional banks and brokerage firms, which offer portfolio management services and investment advice. Also many investors prefer a do-it-yourself approach, which has raised demand for online investment platforms, robo advisors besides discount brokers.