Many “do-it-yourself” investors say a broker’s specialized investment knowledge makes it worthwhile to seek professional help, according to a survey by the Forum for Investor Advice.
The survey found that investors who use brokers are more enthusiastic about their returns. Forty-one percent say they were “very satisfied.” Twenty-seven percent of do-it-yourselfers say they were “very satisfied” over the last 12 months.
Barbara Levin, executive director of the Bethesda, Md.-based Forum for Investor Advice, says: “It’s quite possible that the investors who use an adviser had better performance. Advisers offer discipline and they don’t trade as fast or as frequently as do-it-yourselfers. “[Investors who used advisers] may have had more realistic expectations,” Levin adds. “They may have been more satisfied because they’ve been educated to realize how volatile the market can be.”
The survey was conducted among 324 investors from Dec. 15-17 by Market Facts, a Chicago-based marketing firm. Of those 324, 166 say they have an ongoing relationship with a broker while 157 classified themselves as do-it-yourselfers.
When asked if paying an annual fee or a fee as a percentage of assets rather than a commission would convince do-it-yourselfers to use a broker, one in four said it would make them more likely to use one.
Levin says the three-quarters who would not be more likely to consider paying for advice, regardless of the payment method, simply don’t want to pay. They’re comfortable making their own decisions and in their abilities to trade, she says.
Other findings in the survey: Forty-eight percent of do-it-yourself investors say being able to access a rep’s investment knowledge is the primary reason for seeking advice. Nineteen percent say it would be a secondary reason.
To read more on the survey, go to www.investoradvice.org.