SOURCE: ByAllAccounts

ByAllAccounts

March 16, 2011 08:52 ET

ByAllAccounts' Survey Reveals Financial Advisors Are Missing Opportunity to Attract HNW Clients

Financial Advisors' Fiduciary Responsibility Must Be Clearly Illustrated for Investors

BOSTON, MA--(Marketwire - March 16, 2011) - ByAllAccounts, Inc., the financial advisors' choice for account aggregation, today released results from a nationwide survey of financial advisors on fiduciary responsibility. According to the survey 50.7 percent of financial advisors agree that having a fiduciary standard or code of ethics is an extremely big/very big differentiator when attracting new clients. More than 27 percent, however, are not mentioning fiduciary responsibility in their marketing materials and are missing a growth opportunity. 

"Investors do not understand the difference in fiduciary requirements among different types of financial professionals," said Cynthia Stephens, vice president of marketing at ByAllAccounts. "Explaining in clear terms what it means for your clients that you have fiduciary responsibility provides a marketing opportunity for savvy advisors to attract HNW clients and increase AUM."

A majority of the advisors surveyed (67.7 percent) cite having a fiduciary standard or code of ethics in their marketing materials (all of the time or some of the time). 

"Fiduciary responsibility is about putting your clients' interests first," continued Stephens. "Our research shows that reporting and advising on all of a client's assets is one of the top three things two-thirds of advisors say is indicative of putting their clients' interests first."

Nearly 90 percent of all advisors surveyed believe they are acting as a fiduciary on behalf of their clients. Among them:

  • 41.8 percent view 100 percent of their clients' total assets on a regular basis, including accounts that are held-away, such as 401(K)s;

  • 52.7 percent said they feel it is important to provide advice on retirement funds to put their clients' best interests first;

  • In order to develop a full view of their clients' life goals and financial situation 72.2 percent develop a financial plan; 69 percent have their client fill out a questionnaire; 53.6 percent use an investment policy statement; and 44.8 percent use account aggregation to gather all of their assets for reporting purposes. (Multiple survey responses allowed for this question.)

About the survey
ByAllAccounts conducted a national survey of financial advisors in March 2011 about their fiduciary responsibility. The findings presented are based on aggregated responses from more than 250 advisors. Approximately 50 percent of respondents were registered investment advisors. 

As part of ByAllAccounts' commitment to help financial advisors make smart decisions about the issues impacting their business, the company has several resources available on fiduciary responsibility:

  • Q1 Survey on Fiduciary Responsibility: Executive Summary - report features detailed results from the Q1 survey

  • Understanding the Fiduciary Standard: Webinar Replay - Blaine Aikin, CEO fi360, speaks about the evolving definition of a fiduciary, key fiduciary duties, points of regulatory emphasis, and steps advisors can take to foster fiduciary excellence

  • SMART Decisions Paper - Attract new HNW clients by adhering to the fiduciary standard, part of the ByAllAccounts' monthly educational series

For more information about ByAllAccounts or the survey, please contact Cynthia Stephens at cstephens@byallaccounts.com

About ByAllAccounts, Inc.
ByAllAccounts, the financial advisors' choice for account aggregation since 1999, is the only service that retrieves, enriches and consolidates reconciliation-ready account data from any custodian. ByAllAccounts' patented aggregation engine, through which hundreds of billions in assets flow daily, aggregates all client account data -- from any source -- within an advisor's wealth management platform or trust accounting system for a truly comprehensive view. Thousands of advisors rely on ByAllAccounts to save administrative time and costs, mitigate risk associated with having incomplete information and grow revenues through client referrals and new business development. ByAllAccounts integrates seamlessly with all of the most popular wealth management platforms. For more information, visit www.byallaccounts.com.

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