Advising Female Clients: No Longer a Niche Market

by Ashley Globerman, September 14, 2015
Industry Trends
North America

Abstract

Despite controlling a significant portion of the world’s wealth, female wealth management clients are an overlooked segment of the market. High net worth (HNW) and ultra-high net worth (UHNW) women have frequently cited their dissatisfaction with the services they receive from advisors and the wealth management industry.

There are a growing number of HNW and UHNW women in the US, and Celent expects this number to rise, particularly as female education rates continue to improve, the wage gap between men and women lessens, women’s participation in the labor force increases, and baby boomers transfer their wealth to their children (particularly important as women statistically outlive men). Women are contributing to at least half of their family’s income and, as such, they are progressively becoming the sole or joint decision-makers of their household financial decisions.

“This shift in demographics of HNW and UHNW clients, including the significant wave of next-gen millennial clients, presents an exciting yet complex landscape for financial advisors and the wealth management industry,” says Ashley Globerman, an analyst with Celent’s Wealth Management practice and author of the report. “While the relationship between financial advisors and their female clients has improved, there is more progress to be made.”

Given the size and diversity of female clients across generational cohorts in terms of behavioral characteristics, financial goals, technological aptitude, and product and service needs, wealth managers should increase their understanding of and investment in this particular section of the market. This includes thoughtful client segmentation, marketing efforts, and application of technology.

This report segments the market by generations, explores this unique advisor-client relationship, and describes how wealth managers can adjust their advisory models by using today's technology to better serve this segment of the market.

Celent is a research and advisory firm dedicated to helping financial institutions formulate comprehensive business and technology strategies. Celent publishes reports identifying trends and best practices in financial services technology and conducts consulting engagements for financial institutions looking to use technology to enhance existing business processes or launch new business strategies. With a team of internationally based analysts, Celent is uniquely positioned to offer strategic advice and market insights on a global basis. Celent is a member of the Oliver Wyman Group, which is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Marsh & McLennan Companies [NYSE: MMC].

Media Contacts

North America
Michele Pace
mpace@celent.com
Tel: +1 212 345 1366

Europe (London)
Chris Williams
cwilliams@celent.com
Tel: +44 (0)782 448 3336

Asia (Tokyo)
Yumi Nagaoka
ynagaoka@celent.com
Tel.: +81 3 3500 3023

Table of Contents

Executive Summary

1

 

Key Research Questions

1

Introduction

2

 

Key Research Questions

2

Segment Overview

3

 

Sizing the Opportunity

3

 

Generations

3

Female Clients: No Longer a Niche Market

7

 

Education and Workforce

7

 

Income

9

 

Life Expectancy

12

Advising Female Clients: What’s Your Style?

14

 

The Importance of Client Segmentation

14

 

Shift in Client Demographics

14

 

Digital Strategies

16

Conclusion

21

Leveraging Celent’s Expertise

22

 

Support for Financial Institutions

22

 

Support for Vendors

22

Related Celent Research

23

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