JANUARY 22, 2016
FMS Quick Poll: Wealth Management
By Financial Managers Society

In connection with a story on wealth management in the January 26th issue of FMS Update, we conducted a Quick Poll to find out just how many FMS members are offering (or planning to offer) these services in their institutions.

Even with a healthy 277 members responding, however, a definitive trend one way or the other on the topic was hard to come by, with a statistical 50-50 split on the question of whether the institution offers in-house wealth management services (although the “no’s” won the technical victory by an official count of 139-138). While credit unions made up only about 15% of the responses to the poll, 66% of those indicated that they do offer wealth management services.

Does your institution offer in-house wealth management services?

Part of the reason for the propensity of wealth management services at credit unions may have to do with the asset size of those that participated in the poll – 56% were more than $500 million in assets. In fact, asset size appeared to be a significant factor in the question of whether to offer wealth management for institutions of all kinds, with the larger banks and credit unions more likely to have these services.

Of those institutions answering affirmatively, a follow-up question asking how long they’ve been in the business of wealth management revealed that the majority of banks and credit unions have been offering these services for a decade or more, with comparatively few having recently gotten into the game.

How long have you been offering wealth management services?

For those without wealth management, the prospect of adding this service does not, for the most part, appear to be a priority. In a follow-up question for the 139 members whose institutions are not currently offering wealth management, only 21% indicated they had plans to do so in the near future or were exploring the possibility. In explaining their situations, these respondents were at a variety of different stages of entering into a large-scale endeavor like wealth management, from those just beginning to research the details or search for partners to those on the verge of unveiling their services in the next quarter or two. On the other side of the coin with the 79% not planning to offer wealth management in the near term, several members noted that it is simply not a priority in their institutions right now, while at least one commented that previous efforts in this area had not been fruitful.

Is offering wealth management services something you’re exploring or planning to add in the near future?

Thanks again to those FMS members who participated in our Quick Poll. If you’d like to weigh in on the results of the poll or the topic in general, be sure to share your thoughts in the comments section below or on FMS Connect.