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Advisers helping families through the pandemic's financial ups and downs

The financial volatility and insecurity of the Covid-19 pandemic have prompted many people to seek financial advice, new research reveals.

Whether it's for navigating financial difficulties or evaluating the options for investment, more than half of advised adults (53%) surveyed by Prudential UK said that they were looking for expert advice with their finances.

A third (33%) have already sought financial advice and 20% are planning to. And another 15% said they might seek advice in the future.

Prudential UK surveyed 1,000 advised families for its Family Wealth Unlocked report.

An overwhelming 85% of respondents said they have financial concerns when thinking about the next 12 months, with one quarter having to dig into savings for living costs. Other significant concerns included investments losing money and having to manage on a reduced income.

Overall, these were the biggest financial concerns for those surveyed over the next 12 months:

  1. Having to use my savings to make ends meet - 23%
  2. My investments losing money - 20%
  3. Having a reduced income - 18%
  4. Being made redundant/losing my job - 17%
  5. Social care/health costs - 14%
  6. Not saving any money - 13%
  7. Getting into debt - 11%
  8. Having to financially support my children - 11%
  9. Not being able to afford to retire as planned - 10%
  10. Having to ask my parents/family for financial support - 9%

The need for financial advice was felt greatest among the younger generations, the report found, with 74% of Millennials saying they had or were going to see an adviser, and 58% of Gen Z, driven by 'getting into financial difficulty' and 'wanting to start their investment journey'.

Meanwhile, almost a third (32%) of Gen X, a fifth (21%) of Baby Boomers and a quarter (24%) of those aged 75+ said that the crisis specifically had driven them to seek financial advice.

This difference between the generations may reflect the fact that younger people, who have not necessarily been financially active during a financial crisis, have been made nervous by volatility or have unspent monies to invest, Prudential UK said.

"It's been a challenging 12 months for UK adults up and down the country and this has stimulated the need for advice, be it because of pent-up cash levels, market volatility or job security," commented Vince Smith-Hughes, director of specialist business support at Prudential UK.

"While the need for advice spans all generations, our research reveals the pandemic appears to have created a pronounced opportunity for advisers to provide advice to younger audiences."

Smith-Hughes went on to note that cost was not viewed as a barrier to advice among any of the five generations interviewed for the report.

"In fact, only 3% of the sample overall said they'd like to see an adviser but couldn't afford to," he said. "Hopefully this research also acts as a wake-up call to those who don't currently take advice that many of them could benefit from doing so."

Posted on April 26th 2021

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