February 7, 2012

Advisors Back Romney Over Obama by Huge Margin: FSI Poll

FSI member survey shows economic outlook grim, fiduciary rule unpopular, and that President Obama has little support

GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney at a rally in January. (Photo: AP) GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney at a rally in January. (Photo: AP)

The Financial Services Institute released poll results on Tuesday that showed Mitt Romney was the favored candidate among financial advisors to take the Republican nomination and ultimately the presidency.

Anti-Obama sentiment among advisors is so strong that when asked if they had to choose today (the survey was conducted between Jan. 30 and Feb. 6) between President Barack Obama and one other candidate, 81% chose Romney, then Rick Santorum (75%), Newt Gingrich (74%) or Ron Paul (72%).

“Financial advisors are on the front lines of securing the financial futures of hard-working Americans and they have strong and insightful opinions,” Dale Brown, FSI president and CEO, said in a statement.

Another major issue for advisors is the definition of fiduciary. Seventy-two percent of advisors say the DOL should leave it alone.

Dale Brown, FSI“It is clear that advisors do not believe the Department of Labor should be redefining the term fiduciary, which would price millions of Americans out of advice on their IRAs,” Brown (left) said. “The Department would do well to listen to these advisors and keep their expert opinions in mind as they move forward in their process.”

Regarding the economy and market, advisors are prone to pessimism. Over half expect no better than a “neutral” performance from equities this year, although 36% said they’re looking forward to strong performance. Fifty-five percent of respondents said the economy will stay flat in 2012, and 91% think capital gains taxes will go up.

The survey was conducted last week among FSI's 35,000 members, with nearly 3,000 advisors completing the survey. Brown added that he expected to release another poll in the second quarter.

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