The Wall Street Journal reports that Wells Fargo is banking on history to attract high-net-worth clients. The bank regularly offers the services of its corporate historian to help research wealthy family trees, hoping the information will then lead families to place assets with the firm. By Wells Fargo's own estimate, the historian, Dr. Andy Anderson, has had a hand in bringing in $1 billion in new assets.
According to the paper, "trillions of dollars in personal fortunes are expected to be transferred in the next 50 years as baby boomers pass their wealth to the next generation. In response, competitors are going to extremes to win the right to manage these funds. U.S. Trust has treated current and prospective clients to events with Colin Powell and Rudolph Giuliani, and last month the New York-based wealth-management firm invited 50 guests to a dinner and concert by the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. Chicago-based Northern Trust Corp. has entertained big clients at spring training baseball games and has organized displays of its clients' artwork."