October 10, 2018 was a first for me. The bottom was falling out of markets around the world, yet my phone wasn’t ringing.
Up until last month, I had spent the past seven-plus years as an advisor at Merrill Lynch. And so I’m accustomed to a certain pattern of behavior on days like this: panicked calls from certain clients, questions as to why this is happening, and waging what sometimes amounted to a vigorous defense of my team that this dip in account value was not the result of bad wealth management.
As an advisor on days like this, I wished I was able to provide immediate context to clients on the impact (if any) the sell-off would have on their long-term goals. I wanted a way to stem the flood of panicked calls and sell-orders that would inevitably hit my desk.
On days like this I would often wonder how much of the sell-off was the result of “private wealth” panicking versus institutional wealth. Given the sheer size of private wealth assets across the world, just a small fraction getting spooked is enough to move markets. But what if the small fraction of advisors on the receiving end of panicked calls had been empowered to do just a little bit more? How many clients who sold would have remained invested to achieve their long-term goals? How many of those emotion-driven sell orders would not have been entered in the first place, possibly reducing downward pressure on markets, thereby contributing to the stability of these markets?
Financial plans are what investment strategies are built upon. And so on difficult days I’ve realized that inclination in me to wage that vigorous defense of my team was still there, but this time multiplied exponentially on behalf of all advisors. For those of us at eMoney tasked with providing an industry the capabilities it needs to do its job well, the importance of an advisor’s work isn’t lost on us; it is vital to the stability of the global financial system. On days like the 10th of October 2018, those of us at eMoney find ourselves waging that defense alongside you by asking ourselves: How can we empower advisors to do even more?