NU Online News Service, June 14, 5:05 p.m. – Many wealthy investors are happy with their financial advisors in spite of the recent market volatility, according to new surveys by The Phoenix Companies Inc., Hartford, and Harris Interactive Inc., Rochester, N.Y.

Phoenix, a large financial services company, found that 31% of the 102 financial advisors it surveyed by telephone in March believed their clients were extremely or very dissatisfied with them because of poor investment returns.

But Harris, which conducted a Web-based survey of 1,649 wealthy investors for Phoenix around the same time, found that only 9% of the investors were very or extremely dissatisfied with their main advisors, or dissatisfied enough to plan to seek new advisors in the coming year.

Seventy-nine percent of the wealthy investors said they were happy with their main advisors.

Although dissatisfied wealthy investors were more likely to complain about poor investment results and bad investment strategies than any other problems, 40% said they were unhappy because their advisors failed to make enough of an effort to communicate with them.

Although 55% of the advisors said they were trying harder to communicate with clients as a result of the market turmoil following the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, 83% of the investors said they were hearing from their main advisors less often or about as often as before.

Meanwhile, typical wealthy investors seemed to want more advice in March than they wanted in 2001.

The percentage of investors who admitted to feeling less knowledgeable or only somewhat knowledgeable about investments increased to 26%, from 20%, and the percentage who said they feel fairly knowledgeable or very knowledgeable about the stock market fell to 55%, from 64%.

Fifty-three percent of the investors said they now seek opinions from professional advisors when making their financial decisions, up from 46% in 2001.