A recent poll has shown that financial advisers are finding it difficult to attract millennials as clients.

The poll, conducted by FTAdviser Advantage, showed that two thirds of those polled said millennials made up less than ten per cent of their client base, with 17% saying they had no millennials at all.

Millennials

At the other end of the scale, a scant 8% of respondents said a quarter of their clients were millennials.

There are differing views on the reasons for this. Is it because financial advisers are not engaging with millennials, or that millennials do not see any need to seek advice at the moment.

Tilney Group MD, Jason Hollands, believes that disposable investment cash is mainly held by the over 50s, and that explains how they dominate advisers’ client lists. He believes that millennials are burdened with debt from higher education, and are struggling to climb the property market ladder.

He also talks about the need for firms to engage with financial adviser software, such as that provided by Intelliflo. This is key, since millennials are the first generation for whom it is second nature to engage with service providers electronically.

Even so, there may be other reasons why millennials are not taking advantage of advice, as highlighted in the Wall Street Journal.

Turbulent times

These reasons may include the state of the markets. Millennials have witnessed turbulent times on the markets, perhaps more so than any generation since the 1920s.

Dennis Hall, of Yellowtail Financial Planning, believes that automatic enrolment in workplace pensions has reduced the amount of advice sought by millennials. He also points out that they may feel more comfortable if they were dealing with advisers from a similar age group.
Hall says this means millennials are not currently looking for long-term advice. This was reflected in a report from Royal London, which indicated millennials will wait until their 40s, 50s, or even 60s to seek financial advice.

There are differing views on how soon this group should begin to seek advice. As one of the investment groups with the most exposure to financial issues, perhaps that should be as early as possible. Given that few schools offer personal finance education, clearly millennials will need advice. They should be of interest to advisers before, rather than after, they accumulate significant wealth to invest.

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