Investors are turning to financial advisors and wealth managers for advice on ESG investments, according to global professional services firm Accenture’s new report, “The New State of Advice.”
For the report, Accenture surveyed 1,000 demographically diverse investors across the U.S. and Canada, who have a financial advisor, regarding their financial advice needs, including the types of advice they want, and who they trust to deliver it.
Accenture found that nearly sixty percent of investors have asked for advice on ESG investments, and 84% plan to purchase an ESG product in the next year.
The report indicated that while wealth managers have improved in areas including providing an advice experience that spans multiple consumption methods, growing investor demand for ‘holistic’ advice that considers their sustainability and social responsibility demands, among others, is driving a need for less generic and more tailored investment advice. The report found, for example, that 55% of respondents, and almost 90% of mid-high net worth investors felt that the advice provided to them by their advisor was too generic.
The report carries a clear message for wealth managers and financial advisers on the need to improve in key areas. As investors indicated that the advice they currently receive is too generic, 55% also reported that they believed they could do a better job investing themselves, and 69% said they would consider using Google, Apple or Facebook if they offered wealth products and services.
According to the report, the demand for ESG investment advice is strongest among younger investors. While 59% of respondents overall reported having asked their advisors about ESG or socially responsible investments, the responses were substantially stronger with Generation Z investors (typically defined as under 25 years old) at 80%, and Millennials at 63%, compared to Baby Boomers at 27%.
Rachel Silver, Managing Director in Accenture’s North America wealth management group said:
“The days of tailoring the level of service to fit the size of an investor’s portfolio are over; the average investor expects the same level of service and personalization as someone in the high-net-worth bracket. Wealth management firms should reimagine their advice offerings at scale to provide a seamless client experience with curated recommendations and a purpose-driven product suite that reflects investors’ social interests and key life moments.”
Click here to access the Accenture report.