Life insurance: management advised, piloted, dedicated… Which solution should be favoured?

Diversifying savings on units of account, these investment vehicles not guaranteed in capital and invested in shares, investment funds, etc., requires an effort on the part of the saver. You have to know and understand the different products offered, make your choice and allocate the appropriate amount. Then, you also need to regularly monitor your savings over time. For lack of time or knowledge, some prefer to entrust these tasks to professionals. Life insurance contracts offer different solutions.

While autonomous clients will opt for free management, the others will favor managed management, under mandate, delegated or profiled… “For novices, it is essential, believes Alexis Naacke, director of management at Yomoni. to properly calibrate your project and to be serene afterwards.” Preliminary step? Answer a questionnaire to establish your risk profile. In general, it includes three levels, ranging from cautious to dynamic and balanced, but sometimes it can be scaled differently, with profiles ranked from 1 to 10, as with Yomoni.

It is according to this profile that your savings are divided into different media: guaranteed funds in euros and units of account. The more risk averse you are, the higher the share of funds in euros will be. Conversely, the more risk you accept, the more you will be invested in units of account, and in particular in shares. Depending on your profile, the professional will select the right investment funds, among those referenced in the contract.

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Subtleties to know

Behind this common base exist several subtleties. First of all, some contracts offer advised management. It is actually improved free management. You remain the only master on board but an adviser or a manager recommends a distribution of your savings. Regularly, he makes you arbitrage suggestions (divest from one fund to go to another). These proposals are useful for savers wishing to be guided while retaining the possibility of following only some of the professional’s recommendations. The timing is also up to the insured since it is he and he alone who will be responsible for carrying out the arbitrations, more or less quickly after having read the advice. Some distributors offer this service free of charge to their customers, like Meilleurtaux Placement. “We offer model portfolios for our autonomous clients, this helps them to position themselves, notes Stefan de Quelen, its managing director.

A step above, you access profiled management. This time, it is a question of betting on typical, non-personalized and static profiles. “Our permanent profiles offer the advantage of simplicity and readability, assures Roger Caniard, financial director of the MACSF group. Our promise is a limited number of media but only the best. All at no additional cost.” Profiles are not actively managed. On the other hand, once a year, an automatic arbitration is carried out to rebalance the profile according to the initial weightings. Let’s take an example with the Equilibre profile of the mutual. The latter is made up of 50% of the fund in euros and 50% in units of account. After a year, let’s imagine that the units of account have increased by an average of 25% after a very good stock market year like in 2021. The fund in euros has gained 2%. The distribution of savings will then no longer be 50/50 but 45/55. Arbitration allows the counters to be reset to 50/50. “It’s very healthy because it has the advantage of securing gains when the markets have risen and reinvesting downwards in the opposite case”, underlines Roger Caniard.

But the most widespread offer is managed management or management under mandate, generally invoiced by an increase of a few tenths of points in management fees. It differs from profiled management because the insurer works with a management company to which it gives a mandate. Among the offers available on the market, there are big names in management such as Lazard Frères Gestion, Edmond de Rothschild AM, Carmignac… Another distinctive element: the portfolio is managed more actively. “The manager defines a distribution of capital on different supports, which he reassesses approximately once a month and he gives these grids to the insurer who carries out the arbitrations”, details Stellane Cohen, president of Altaprofits. In this category, the offer is vast. Some contracts even leave the choice between several management companies. There are also thematic managements, on the climate, technology… “It’s interesting because the criterion of choice is no longer only the level of risk and it gives another reading to its investment”, estimates Stellane Cohen.

Another proposal to study: managed management implemented by robo-advisors like Yomoni. His particuliarity ? It is operated solely on index products, the famous ETFs (exchange traded funds), which charge management fees much lower than those of traditional funds. “We are convinced that management fees destroy performance, especially from a long-term savings perspective,” says Alexis Naacke. On the other hand, the mandate fees are a little higher than those of other managed managements.

Finally, for the wealthiest, who can invest a few hundred thousand euros, it is possible to access dedicated management, truly tailor-made. “You then sign a three-party agreement between you, the insurer and the manager, who has the possibility of managing your savings in real time”, explains Stefan de Quelen.

Good to know: some contracts accept a mix of solutions, and the possibility of placing part of your savings in managed management and keeping another in free management. The interest? This makes it possible to personalize management with a few strong convictions (a fund on biotechs or on China, for example). “It is more suited to an expert clientele, who will be able to assert their tactical bets, alongside a long-term allocation”, estimates Alexis Naacke. Above all, this makes it possible to invest in certain media that are not accessible in controlled management such as real estate investment companies (SCPI), structured products or even Private Equity.

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Dario Ingiusto / L’Express



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