Executives silhouetted in an office (Image: Thinkstock)

Sixty percent of family offices in the U.S. and Europe expect significantly improved financial markets in 12 months and another 27% expect some improvement, according to a survey released Wednesday by familyofficehub.io, a global family office portal.

Only 20% of family office executives in the survey expected a slightly worse situation in six months, and 13% thought that the situation in the markets would be the same as today in 12 months.

The online survey was conducted between March 16 and March 19 among 15 selected family offices from the U.S. and Europe. Fifty-three percent of the participants were executives from major multifamily offices, and 47% were single family office executives.

The portfolios of participating family offices outperformed most stock markets, according to the survey results. Fifty-seven percent experienced losses of 0% to 10% from Feb. 25 to March 16, while 14% registered gains in the 0% to 10% range.

Only one family office in the survey had to cope with losses between 20% and 30%.

Overall, 67% of the participants said they expected the heaviest losses in financial markets, followed by 13% who expected the heaviest losses in venture capital.

The survey found that only 20% of surveyed family offices had changed their investment style because of the crisis, and 27% were considering changes to their investment strategy. The remaining 53% were remaining calm and adhering to their investment style.

At present, a majority of the family offices said they were performing risk adjustments and preparing re-allocations.

Most said they were already exploring investment opportunities, such as distressed equity or bonds. Many were targeting tech stocks — including Apple, Facebook, Google and Netflix — and food companies. Others were preparing private equity purchases.

Like just about every other business and nonprofit leader, 80% of family office executives said their daily operations had been disrupted by the COVID-19 outbreak.

The participating family offices reported that they had changed to working from home in order to fight the coronavirus spread, with 47% of their teams completely working from home and 53% working partly from the firm’s office.

Executives said hygienic standards at their family offices had increased, governmental guidelines were being strictly followed and additional internal company policies were being created.