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Trustee confidence presents advice opportunity

The latest industry survey on SMSF trustee sentiment has shown confidence levels surrounding certain asset classes among men and women should generate greater opportunities for the provision of more tailored advice.

The “Women and SMSFs: Empowering and supporting SMSF members on their investment journey” report revealed confidence levels among trustees in their understanding of certain asset classes were higher than expected.

According to SMSF Association chief executive Andrea Slattery, the finding demonstrated advisers could now have broader asset class conversations with SMSF clients.

“Seventy-four per cent of gen Y trustees indicated they are comfortable with cash. They’re not quite as comfortable with hybrids by comparison, 57 per cent, but that’s still high,” she said.

“If they’ve got an understanding of these [asset classes] or a confidence level in their understanding of them, then as an adviser you should be testing that.

“You should be encouraging them into an asset class where you can engage with them and work [these asset classes into] their portfolios that way.”

In relation to SMSF establishment, the study showed only 11 per cent of gen Y trustees sought advice from a financial planner or accountant during the process. In contrast, gen X trustees, 25 per cent, and baby boomer trustees, 27 per cent, were more like to seek help from a financial planner or accountant when setting up an SMSF.

Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) head of SMSF customers Marcus Evans said the figures indicated there was a great opportunity for more tailored SMSF advice as opposed to advice around processes, such as set-up.

“Estate planning is a great example of something that is needed, it’s specialised, and we need to get that piece out there,” Evans added.

Galaxy Research conducted the survey on behalf of the SMSF Association and CBA.

The report garnered the views of 801 SMSF trustees and 535 non-SMSF members aged 18 years and over.

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