In an astonishingly short time starting in March, vast segments of the U.S. economy shifted from working in offices to working remotely.
A study by Direxion, which provides leveraged and thematic ETFs, and ETF Trends, a source of industry coverage, explored various aspects of working remotely during the pandemic and how the new work environment has affected financial advisors and the ETF industry.
The survey also provided a better understanding of the long-term effects of this secular shift on the advisor market.
The survey was conducted Sept. 25 through Oct. 28 among 2,169 respondents, the majority describing themselves as either asset gatherers or portfolio managers; 55% said their client portfolios are 1% to 40% ETFs; and another 35% said that they use ETFs for more than 40% of their client assets.
Although most advisors did not work remotely before the coronavirus outbreak in the U.S., 83% of survey participants said they would like to work at least one day a week from home permanently. Forty-three percent would like to work at least three days a week from home permanently.
Sixty-four percent of advisors reported that their relationships with clients had not changed after they started working from home, and 18% said their client relationships had strengthened.
Advisors have been talking to their clients more, the survey found. Seventy percent reported increasing their use of video, and 60% said they simply picked up the phone to stay in touch.