Wealth Management in North America: Clients, Products, and Providers

January 22, 2007

Abstract

New York, NY, USA January 22, 2007

The population of affluent and wealthy individuals in North America will grow to 37.7 million by 2010, a 24% increase from 30.4 million in 2006. To win clients and assets in this growing market, financial institutions should align their clients, products, and distribution channels.

In the report, , Celent takes a snapshot of the wealth management industry at the start of 2007. According to the report, there are three different major client segments to be considered by wealth management providers:

  • Mass affluent, with net worth of $250,000 to $2 million, a population of 33.9 million and total assets of $7.2 trillion in 2010.
  • High net worth, with assets from $2 million to $10 million, a population of 3.4 million and total assets of $7.9 trillion in 2010.
  • Ultra-high net worth, with assets of more than $10 million, a population of 377,000 and total assets of $4.2 trillion in 2010.

Today's wealth management market has become more complicated as the numbers of the wealthy have grown. Different institutions cater to different segments of the market, though there is frequent overlap among some firms. The overlap increased the range of customer segments served, but with the negative outcome of a dilution of that organization's image.

"Many firms struggle between trying to be best of breed and being all things to all people, and wind up being neither," says Robert J. Ellis, senior analyst in Celent's Securities & Investments practice and author of the report. "Cognitive dissonance occurs on the part of clients when they are offered the wrong products through the wrong delivery channels."

The report analyzes client segments in detail, then looks at the wealth management products and the distribution channels used by the differing types of financial services firms to serve the different client segments. It also looks at the requisite classes of wealth management technology and identifies and analyzes future trends in clients, products, providers, and technology within the wealth management arena.

This report is instructive to any organization that competes in the wealth management arena, including brokerage firms, asset management companies, and financial planners, as well as insurance firms and banks.

The report is 52 pages long and contains eight tables and 20 figures. A table of contents is available online.

Members of Celent's research services can download the report electronically by clicking on the icon to the left. Non-members should contact info@celent.com for more information.

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 3
What is Wealth Management? 5
Wealth Management Clients 7
Wealth Management Products 17
Wealth Management Providers 22
The Role of Technology 37
Looking Forward 43
Conclusion 48
Objectivity and Methodology 49

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