Heading into Spring 2023, there’s a lot of talk about tough economic conditions ahead. Meanwhile, over the last few months, the United States has navigated a historic test to the integrity of its financial system — more specifically, the collapse of two regional banks. In moments like these, it’s important to pause, take a step back, reflect, and focus on distinguishing signal from noise.
Let’s start with perspectives from fellow financial advisors. Here’s your reading list for April.
1. Millennials are seeking financial advice earlier
Against the backdrop of a challenging macroeconomic climate, millennials are seeking financial advance at an earlier age than their parents’ generation, according to a study released on April 5. This cohort is motivated by a desire to proactively seek help.
“Among millennials who work with a financial professional, three-quarters (76%) feel good about where they stand financially,” explains an Ameriprise company release.
“They’ve lived through major events in history and weathered the ups and downs of various economic cycles, which has informed their worldview and given them confidence that they will be able to tackle whatever the future holds.”
If you’re a financial advisor looking to work with millennials, it’s a good idea to understand their stressors and motivations. You can learn more by reading here.
2. Why DEI is particularly important in wealth management
Source: Financial Planning
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) is a focal point of the American economy.
“Companies throughout the country are increasingly pledging to improve diversity, equity and inclusion at their firms — 441 publicly traded companies now disclose EEOC data and 70% of S&P 500 firms share or have committed to share data,” writes Stewart Bowling for Financial Planning.
To help highlight the power of diversity, Financial Planning magazine has published this roundup of stories.
3. Directions for charitable giving
Charitable giving is important for supporting the world’s less fortunate. We’ve written before, at CircleBlack, that a focus on philanthropy can help bring value back to financial advisors as well.
Navigating charitable giving conversations should cover more than taxes and financial outcomes, however. It’s about doing good.
“Not only does it make good financial sense to coordinate giving with your clients’ overall wealth management, but it shows them that they can trust you with a more personal piece of their portfolio,” writes Hannah Shaw Grove for FA Mag.
Read more here for tips on navigating charitable giving conversations with clients.
4. The bank chaos is scary. Don’t panic.
Sometimes, it’s challenging to remember that markets are tied to the judgment calls of people. Yes, the Silicon Valley Bank collapse was alarming.
“The banking crisis comes as trust in institutions, whether government or media, is at an all-time low,” writes Elizabeth O’Brien for Barron’s.
Ultimately, it was a bank run that caused the collapse.
“Fears about the bank’s solvency circulated quickly via messaging apps among its customers, many of whom were venture capitalists and startup founders,” elaborates O’Brien. “When those customers decided to withdraw their money en masse, they forced a liquidity squeeze at the bank, which had lost significant amounts of money in Treasury bonds due to rising interest rates.”
Staying calm is a superpower, especially for trusted professionals who are guiding financial decisions. Read more wisdom on the topic here.
5. If you’re worried about market volatility, here’s how this advisor says you should handle the stress
Stress is terrible for our health. No matter what’s happening in the market, self-care is critical. Money is replaceable. Our bodies aren’t. As it turns out, stress isn’t good for investing, either.
“We are inherently emotional beings, and few things elicit more emotion than when we believe our investments are at risk,” writes Andrew Oserland for CNBC. “Acknowledge these emotions; don’t deny them. It will give you more control over them and improve your financial decision-making.”
It’s important to make investing decisions from the perspective of your rational mind. Read more here.
6. Advisors need to work smarter to win over clients
Source: J.D. Power
In today’s uncertain economy, it’s understandable that (some) investors may direct blame or frustration towards their financial advisors.
“Overall investor satisfaction with full-service investment advisors is 727, which is down 17 points from a year ago,” explains a recent J.D. Power study. “The performance is consistent with the long-term trend of investor satisfaction moving in lockstep with stock market performance.”
The study elaborates that “few advisors are delivering on their core value proposition.”
Yes, this finding may be tough for some advisors to read. But it’s possible to get ahead of the challenge — to be better than average. Read more here.
Remember that your core value proposition is up to you to define and steer forward. Positive, well-intentioned clients are out there.
CircleBlack is an all-in-one technology platform for relationship-focused financial advisors. To learn how our software can help you build, manage, and grow your wealth management practice, get in touch to request a demo.
This material has been prepared for educational purposes only. It is not intended to provide, and should not be relied upon for, investment, accounting, legal, or tax advice.