Advisors Go MIA

Sixty-two percent of investors surveyed said they worked with a financial advisor. Of these, 31% said they had no contact with their advisor in the three months since the coronavirus emerged stateside. Twenty-eight percent heard from their advisor once, 23% two times and just 18% heard from their advisor three or more times. (Charts: J.D. Power)

Interaction Drives Rebalancing

Advisors are often seen as counseling investors to stay the course and not act rashly during difficult markets. However, J.D. Power found that investors who have had advisor contact since the pandemic’s onset were much less likely to say they would do nothing with their portfolio.

Digital Outreach (or Lack Thereof)

As physical distancing measures took hold, a J.D. Power study in March found that 71% of investors with an advisor reported contact by phone and 55% via email. Only 12% had participated in video conferences. J.D. Power noted that phone and email remain the most desired by clients. Nevertheless, it said, advisors trail what clients want in terms of use of digital channels, which is critical to increase overall client contact levels and engagement.

A Missed Opportunity

J.D. Power’s survey found that 66% of investors currently working with an advisor agreed or strongly agreed that they were on track to achieve their long-term goals. But that is not to say advisors have not missed an excellent opportunity. J.D. Power said advisors who were proactive in March and April are far better positioned to reap the rewards in client retention, loyalty and referrals in coming months.

Professionals across the U.S. economy had to make quick adjustments in their client relationships when the coronavirus pandemic besieged the country in late winter.

A new report from J.D. Power indicates that wealth managers missed the mark.

At the outset of the crisis, financial markets seized up. The S&P 500 fell nearly 1,000 points between Feb. 19 and March 18. However, many financial advisors were slow to offer guidance to their clients, if they did so at all, according to the report.

The report was based on data as part of a J.D. Power pulse engagement study conducted from May 27 to June 5 among 521 individual investors.

Check the gallery to find out what investors thought of their advisors’ response to the pandemic.

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