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Affordable advice an increasing challenge

affordable; financial; advice; planners

The ability to provide affordable advice has been revealed by the latest industry research as a growing challenge for the financial planners.

The latest research into financial planning has revealed the ability to provide affordable advice to most Australians is becoming a greater concern among practitioners.

The “Investment Trends 2019 Planner Technology Report” showed 43 per cent of respondents, versus 33 per cent in 2018, admitting they were experiencing obstacles in providing affordable advice.

In a similar finding, 39 per cent of practitioners surveyed said they were having difficulty reducing the cost of advice, up from 27 per cent last year.

The research also indicated 70 per cent of participants nominated compliance burdens as the most significant challenge currently facing advisers.

“Financial planners are striving to widen their pool of eligible clients as a host of macro challenges impact their bottom line,” Investment Trends research director Recep Peker said.

“For years, planners have struggled to grow their client base as they face a shifting regulatory landscape, the reputational impact of the royal commission and uncertain market conditions. In their quest to lift client numbers and practice profitability, more planners are focused on lowering cost and serving clients in an affordable manner.

“Planners will be evaluating their technology partners, licensee and product set more critically than ever as they seek solutions that best meet the needs both of their clients and their practice.”

With regard to service partners, the report found advisers had reduced the number of platforms they are using over the past decade from three to five in 2009 to roughly two in 2019.

The study also showed the top three platforms with the highest satisfaction ratings to be Netwealth, Hub24 and Asgard eWrap.

“While many platforms continue to maintain high user satisfaction, industry-wide overall satisfaction has declined to a seven-year low,” Peker said.

“Planners are demanding more support from platforms and their support needs go beyond custody and reporting.”

The report analysed responses from 1030 financial planners, with the survey ending in May.

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