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  2. Ability, not relationship, what informed young investors want from advisers

Ability, not relationship, what informed young investors want from advisers

Case Study
01 Jun 2017

Younger investors are focused on technical ability and results, not long-term relationship, when evaluating their financial advisers – according to data from the latest bi-annual Lifeplan ICFS Financial Advice Satisfaction Index.

The survey, conducted every six months by Australian Unity with the University of Adelaide, measures investors’ attitudes to financial advisers including perceptions of trust and reliability, technical ability and investment performance.

The Index showed younger investors are paying more attention to their finances and are interested in more sophisticated investment plans.

Matt Walsh, General Manager of Life and Super at Australian Unity, said that younger investors are utilising financial advisers for specific life stages and major events (such as having a baby), in place of more traditional long-term arrangements.

With the home ownership challenge not going anywhere, it made sense that younger investors were taking a life-stage approach to investment planning.

The survey also showed that younger investors are relying more on their own financial literacy to discern good financial advice. Mr Walsh said compared to the previous index peak in April 2015, investors today have an increased level of financial literacy and a growing ability to discern good financial advice from poor quality advice.

“Since the survey was launched 10 years ago, there’s increased scrutiny on the financial planning industry and investors have access to a growing level of financial information online”, he said.

Mr Walsh also said it was clear the traditional emphasis placed on long-term relationship with financial advisers is decreasing, particularly with young investors.

“What is clear, is that compared with older generations, today’s younger investors are taking a functional and transactional approach to the financial advisor role”, he said.

“Advisers need to excel in the services they provide, with investors seeing advice as a more transactional and easily replicated service rather than something they sign up to for an extended period which is quite different to how their parents may engage their adviser”, he said.

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Matt Walsh

General Manager - Life and Super

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