State Street received the lowest score of nine custodians in a survey carried out by R&M Custody while RBC Investor Services received the highest.
The two companies were in the same positions when the same survey was carried out in 2012, suggesting perceptions of these firms are entrenched. However, there was movement among the other firms in the list, with Northern Trust improving its position from seventh to third and BNY Mellon falling two places to fifth.
The results are from a survey that asked respondents to assess custodians across 49 aspects of the custody business ranging from settlements and income collection to customised services such as securities lending.
“This survey is all about perception,” says a research director at R&M Custody. “Very often clients’ views can be coloured by what is happening in the environment around them. Triple dip recession, over regulation and winter blues could all be reasons for people to give lower scores. Europe saw the biggest decline whilst the US actually saw scores go up, that in itself may tell you something about over regulation.”
State Street's approval rating relative to other firms was higher among respondents who filled out the survey for five or more custodians. In this list, the company came fifth. RBC Investor Services was first in both lists.
RBC is a relatively small player in global custody, with €1.7 trillion under custody as of June 30, 2012, according to Funds Europe's custody survey 2012.
In contrast, State Street was the third-biggest custodian according the Funds Europe survey, with €12.9 trillion under custody at June 30, 2012, while BNY Mellon had the most assets with €21.4 trillion under custody.
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