Demand is High for Independent Wealth Advice, Especially for Women Advisors

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If two new surveys published today and sponsored by Charles Schwab are to be believed, there is an increase demand among high net worth investors for independent wealth management advice, and women are key decision makers in six out of 10 high net worth households, as well as the sole or primary decision makers in one out of five.

Interestingly, these same surveys found that almost half of all independent wealth management firms report that there are no female advisors working at their companies. According to the survey, more than one out of three (35 percent) think it is somewhat or extremely important for their firm’s advisors to match the demographic profile of their clients, while nearly half didn't consider it all that important.

The Schwab surveys also report high net worth investors are more confident in their advisors than they are about the markets and the economy.

The Independent Advisor Outlook Study surveyed almost 900 RIAs representing $204 billion in assets under management and The High Net Worth Investor Study polled 504 high net worth investors. Both were conducted by Koski Research.

The surveys' findings include:

  • Almost three out of five (59 percent) independent advisors say they feel it will be difficult to meet their clients’ investment goals.

  • Over one-third (37 percent) of HNW investors say their desire for investment advice during the past four years has increased.

  • Almost all advisors (93 percent) reported gaining new clients over the past year; the biggest source has been investors leaving full-service brokerage firms (39 percent).

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