FINANCIAL CONSULTANCY AND INSURANCE, A MARRIAGE OF CONVENIENCE

Bluerating | November 2021

Only 25% of Italians invest and only 10% have adequate insurance coverage. On the other hand, by 2022 Italy is going to have 2.000 billion euros on current accounts.

Many financial professionals mock Italians for their inadequate financial education (which is a well-known fact) rather than assuming a healthy dose of self-criticism.

In fact, 70% of clients with annual average total assets worth 100.000 euros have not heard from their advisors for 12 months. Therefore, it is not only a matter of inadequate financial education, but also a lack of proactivity on the part of the offer.

Not to mention that, in the financial field, the level of trust in the offer, the true propellant for the conversion of liquid assets into managed assets and protection, is quite low.

Even in the private and HNWI segments the percentage reaches 72% (investments) and 66% (insurance coverage).

So, unexplored lands do not include Italian savers and non-investors only, but also the most coveted areas of the offer.

Protection blends perfectly with asset management. And this is true for everyone, even more so for HNWIs. There are three main reasons.

Firstly, the impossibility to impound assets. HNWIs are well-aware of this: as entrepreneurs or former entrepreneurs, they wish to protect their personal assets.

Secondly, the possibility to name a beneficiary outside the line of hereditary succession. HNWIs often have articulated, complex family situations.

Finally, protection also means exemption from inheritance taxes. And, since HNWIs are normally lively seventy- (or eighty-) year-old, it all makes sense.

In the market of financial consultancy, 40% of managed assets belong to private clients. Moreover, on average the percentage of private clients in the portfolio of Italian financial advisors has increased from 5% to 34% over the past 10 years.

In this sense, Zurich’s acquisition of the Deutsche Bank financial network appears not as an option, but rather as a judgement call. Indeed, the former Finanza&Futuro had six billion in insurance products of the Swiss company.

It is not difficult to imagine the fate of Zurich policies, had they fallen into the hands of, of example, Allianz.

The figures provided by Assoreti speak for themselves. The financial networks’ 2021 record was driven by two kinds of product: 1) open funds and SICAVs (+ 10,5 billions since early 2021) and insurance products (+ 11,3 billions since early 2021, of which 7 billion from unit-linked policies and 4,3 billion from multi-branch insurance policies).

So, financial advisors and insurance: could it be a marriage of convenience?

Nicola Ronchetti

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