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86% of brokers believe downturn has made clients value their service more

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86% of brokers believe downturn has made clients value their service more

9 out of 10 IFAs believe that the positive long-term relationships they have with their clients will be unaffected by the negative fall-out from the credit crunch. 

When asked to what extent advisers either agreed or disagreed that the credit crunch will mean their clients will view them with the same distrust they have come to view other financial institutions, an unequivocal 91 per cent said that they either disagreed or strongly disagreed with the statement. While a mere 5 per cent either agreed or strongly agreed.
An equally strong reaction came in response to being asked if the credit crunch will mean clients will value their service more, with 86 per cent of advisers either agreeing or strongly agreeing with the statement. Four per cent either disagree or strongly disagreed.
The findings form part of a 112 strong independent financial adviser survey conducted at the annual Sesame Symposium, now in its second year.
In 2007 advisers were asked whether they believed there would be a strong demand for financial advice over the next 12 months. Back then 66 per cent of advisers said yes. This latest survey reveals a slight drop in that confidence, with 57 per cent agreeing this time round. In the current market climate this is nonetheless an encouragingly high percentage, says Sesame sales and marketing director Stephen Young.
Eleven per cent disagreed and 32 per cent were undecided. 
Further optimism was revealed when the advisers were asked what lasting impact the credit crunch would have on the relationship with their clients. Sixty-one per cent said that it would cause short-term problems but the relationship would remain strong.
A fact that will be bolstered by additional findings that showed 70 per cent of advisers are actively reviewing the type of service they offer clients - down slightly from the 2007 findings of 75 per cent.
Young says of the findings: “It is testament to the strength of the relationships advisers have built that they are so confident this trust will not be eroded by their clients’ negative view of the wider financial services world. Clearly there are challenges that each of us must rise to in the coming months as predictions of continued market flux dominate the headlines. However what will remain constant throughout is the fact that clients, now more than ever, will need help with their investment strategy, their protection provision, their mortgage choices, and their retirement. And this need for professional independent advice is not going to disappear. Advisers are right to be optimistic.”

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