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Wealthy Investors Use Advisors More Frequently: Spectrem Research

The wealthier the investor, the more likely he is to use a financial advisor, and to use an advisor more frequently than less wealthy investors.

| BY Kent McDill

More wealthy investors use financial advisors, and more of them use advisors more frequently, Spectrem research shows.

Spectrem’s new report, Relationships with Advisors, details the advisor usage of investors who are segmented by wealth: Mass Affluent (with a net worth of between $100,000 and $1 million Not Including Primary Residence), Millionaire (with a net worth of between $1 million and $5 million NIPR), and Ultra High Net Worth (with a net worth between $5 million and $25 million NIPR).

There are four levels of advisor dependency among investors, and “self-directed” investors make their own investment decisions without the assistance of an advisor. Only 23 percent of UHNW investors consider themselves self-directed, with 26 percent of Millionaires and 38 percent of Mass Affluent investors calling themselves self-directed.

It is uncertain why Mass Affluent investors are reluctant to use advisors, although fees related to having an advisor could be one of those reasons.

The Spectrem report also looks at “advisor-assisted” investors who regularly consult with an advisor for most investment needs, but make most of the final decisions. “Advisor-dependent” investors rely on an advisor to make most or all investment decisions.   

Fifty percent of UHNW investors are either advisor-assisted or advisor dependent, compared to only 29 percent of Mass Affluent investors who make frequent use of an advisor. Forty percent of Millionaires are in one of the two advisor-heavy categories.

It is impossible to draw a direct correlation between wealth level and advisor dependency, but the research does show that wealthier investors use advisors more frequently than less-wealthy investors do.

UHNW and Millionaire investors report similar increases in advisor usage. Thirty-six percent of UHNW investors and 35 percent of Millionaire investors say they have worked more with a professional advisor in the past two years than they did previously. Only 25 percent of Mass Affluent investors say they have used an advisor more in the past two years than they did in 2011.



About the Author


Kent McDill

kmcdill@spectrem.com

Kent McDill is a staff writer for Millionaire Corner. McDill spent 30 years as a sports writer, working for United Press International and the Daily Herald of Arlington Heights, Ill. From 1988-1999, he covered the Chicago Bulls for the Daily Herald, traveling with them every day through the nine-month season. He also covered the Bulls for UPI from 1985-88, and currently covers the team for www.nba.com. He has written two books on the Bulls, including the new title “100 Things Bulls Fans Should Know And Do Before They Die’, published by Triumph Books. In August 2013, his new book “100 Things Bears Fans Should Know And Do Before They Die” gets published.

In 2008, he resigned from the Herald and became a freelance writer. The Herald hired him to write business features and speeches for the Daily Herald Business Conferences and Awards presentations.

McDill also writes a monthly parenting column for the Herald’s Suburban Parent magazine.

McDill is the father of four children, and an active fan of soccer, Jimmy  Buffett and all things Disney.