The Complete Guide to What We Do
UBS is the largest Swiss banking institution in the world. UBS is very well known for its private wealth management practice. In fact, UBS wealth management is the largest in the world, managing a staggering $2.59 trillion in assets. It is estimated that some 50% of the world’s billionaires are UBS clients. These numbers can sound quite impressive. If you are a high net worth individual then being able to achieve all your financial goals is the most important thing, and if you have $10 million or more in investible liquid assets, then download this guide on choosing the best financial advisor.
Wealth management is more than just portfolio management. It involves looking at all aspects of your financial life. Wealth management is also about trust and understanding the life goals of every high net worth or ultra-high net worth client. So, a certain amount of emotional intelligence or EQ is also needed along with the usual IQ. Choosing a wealth management firm to work with can be an important yet challenging decision.
There are many options to choose from as far as wealth management firms are concerned. One can opt for the big Wall Street names that have banking, asset management, investment banking, and private wealth management business segments. One can also choose to work with a niche boutique firm like Pillar Wealth Management that caters to individuals and families with $5 million to $500 million in liquid assets.
We have decided to write the following guide to help you make an informed decision. We will look at what betting on the future of wealth management with UBS means, whether UBS wealth management looks strong, what building for the future of wealth management means, and whether there will be enhanced stability in a global economy.
Table of Contents
Betting On The Future Of Wealth Management With UBS
Betting on the future of wealth management with UBS involved the firm to re-look at its priorities. Being a large Wall Street firm, UBS was into investment banking, asset management, and many other businesses. Wealth management was one of the segments. However, after the global financial crisis, the firm decided to focus more on its wealth management decision.
The desire (or compulsion) to improve profitability drove this re-evaluation. The interesting thing to note is that shareholder returns and the demands of Wall Street often drive big firms to make strategic shifts. Niche firms like Pillar Wealth Management, a wealth manager for clients with $5 million to $500 million in liquid assets, work in a different way.Schedule a free consultation to know more about the wealth management process at Pillar Wealth Management.
The compulsions to boost shareholder value should not come at the cost of wealth management client interests. For example, if a brand name firm has a wealth management practice as well as an asset management division, then the wealth managers at the firm may be motivated to recommend money management offered by the firm’s asset management division. This is great if such investments help meet the goals of the client. But, if the client’s portfolio can perform better via investments in funds from competitor companies, then that is what’s best for the client. It may not be good for “shareholder value creation”, but the best interests of the client are paramount. We have talked about things that you need to be careful about when working with larger firms in this guide on choosing the best financial advisor for individuals with $5 million to $500 million in investible liquid assets.
UBS Wealth Management Looks Strong
UBS wealth management looks strong in terms of the number of services like retirement planning, investment management, estate planning, sustainable investing, philanthropy, and risk management. However, the number of services alone should not be the sole metric for classifying a wealth management firm as strong or weak. Instead, what should matter is whether the wealth manager can help you fulfill all your financial goals. A wealth manager who can do this for you without you getting stressed out is the one that looks strong.
At Pillar Wealth Management, we follow the philosophy of financial serenity. It basically means that the client should progress towards achieving his/her life goals while still being able to sleep at night. Based on our decades of experience, we have established a system that works and that does not make our clients worry about the next market crash. Having a system-based approach that does not involve making emotional decisions or investment calls based on a “hunch” makes a wealth management firm’s offering strong. Benjamin Graham wrote in his famous book The Intelligent Investor that Mr. Market will keep prodding you every day, but you have to be non-emotional and focus on the business in which you have invested. In wealth management, you have to focus on your financial goals without getting phased by what the market is doing.
Another factor that we believe makes a wealth management firm strong is ethics and integrity. This can happen if a wealth manager is also a registered fiduciary. An investment professional can act as a fiduciary by registering either with the SEC or the state regulator. Acting in the best interests of the clients is a legal obligation for a fiduciary. Having the right fee-structure is also an important factor.
Building for the Future of Wealth Management
When we talk about building for the future of wealth management, technology is generally part of the discussion. As with other aspects of our lives, technology is playing an increasingly important in our financial lives as well. Whether it is mobile payments, digital currencies, online banking, or online investment research, we use technology for some or the other financial task. Wealth management is also bound to be affected by technology.
While trust and personal touch are still important in wealth management, the younger generation and the tech-savvy client also want convenience and fast solutions. Being able to access investment tools and financial knowledge digitally is important. Firms like UBS wealth management are having to create digital experiences that meet the changing needs of high net worth clients.
The future of wealth management also involves the ability to engage with the younger generation. There is a major transfer, taking place right now, of wealth from baby boomers to millennials. A good wealth manager has to be able to advise on things like succession planning, ESG investing, and everything else that involves the younger generation. You can read more about these areas of wealth management in this book called The Ultimate Guide to Choosing the Best Financial Advisor: For Investors With $5 Million to $500 Million in Liquid Assets.
Building for the future involves customizing the wealth management service delivery for every client. The smaller regional firms tend to be more nimble and are able to offer white-glove services. Someone like a Pillar Wealth Management has advised business owners, medical professionals, engineers, management executives, and high net worth families. Having the experience of catering to the diverse needs of such diverse backgrounds is a key quality.Speak to Hutch Ashoo to learn more about this approach.
Enhanced Stability in a Global Economy
The world has clearly been through a lot lately. The US-China trade war had a reasonable impact on the overall global economy. But, the pandemic elevated the volatility to a whole new level. In fact, the idea of enhances stability in a global economy seems a bit far-fetched. As the world becomes more interconnected, volatility may actually go up. An adverse event in one country can have a significant impact in a completely different country. The way global supply chains are set up makes every country interdependent on other countries.
The globalization of the world has important implications for wealth management as well. Technological advancements and shifting global power equations are resulting in a re-think of traditional theories. At the same time, certain fundamental rules of investing remain unchanged. Asset allocation is still important, risk management still plays an equally important role as before, and market cycles continue to happen. It is the job of UBS wealth management or any good wealth manager to position a client’s finances to reflect these dynamics. We encourage you to read this guide on improving portfolio performance for investors with $5 million to $500 million in investible assets.
If a wealth manager assumes a specific rate of return for years in his/her projections when making a wealth plan for you, then you would want to be wary of such assumptions. There is no way a wealth manager (or anyone) can promise you an 8% return for a decade or two. The only things one can control are the asset allocation strategies, the risk management measures to help you avoid large draw-downs in times of crisis, and a constant stress-testing of portfolios. Feel free to start a conversation with Pillar Wealth Management to know how wealth management firms execute such strategies.
Finding a reputed firm like UBS wealth management
Now that you understand some of the nuances of wealth management, you must be asking yourself how you can find a wealth manager with all the right qualities. Before we give you some tips on finding a reputed wealth management firm, we would first encourage you to do one thing. We would suggest that you self-introspect and ask yourself why you want to work with a wealth manager. What are the specific areas in your financial life where you could do with some help? What kind of services within wealth management are you looking for? It is only when you know what you want will you be able to figure out where to find it. To help you self-introspect and build the right mindset, we have written a short guide on the critical shifts that individuals and families with $5 million to $500 million need to maximize portfolio performance.
Finding firms like UBS wealth management isn’t too difficult. Such firms are well-known and you can visit their website to know more about the services that they offer. However, the key is to find a wealth manager who is the right fit for your needs. Are you looking for someone who will be like a family friend whom you can call whenever you have a question? Do you prefer having only one person handle everything for you so that he/she knows your complete financial history and issues? One great way of finding promising wealth managers is to lean on your personal network. Ask your relatives, friends, and college mates. Your business partners might be high net worth individuals just like you and they may know someone or may already be working with a successful firm. You can also give Hutch Ashoo a call and discuss anything about wealth management.
Pillar Wealth Management is fee-only and a fiduciary
Pillar Wealth Management is a niche firm that dedicates itself to offering white-glove personalized wealth management services. The firm is serious about the personalization part and is, therefore, not afraid to turn away new business to keep its client count low. This year, the firm is accepting only 17 new clients. This allows the firm to go in-depth into each portfolio and handhold its clients through the ups and downs.
Pillar Wealth Management also places special emphasis on investment costs. Most fund managers are obsessed with gross returns. However, taxes, fees, and other expenses chip away those returns and what the client ultimately gets is the net return. Pillar recognizes this and therefore works as hard on optimizing investment costs as it does to earn high portfolio returns. Pillar is so committed to this cause that it offers to save a client $100,000 for every $10 million in assets that a client brings in for management.
Hutch Ashoo and Christopher Snyder are the expert founders of independent, fee-only, and fiduciary wealth management firm Pillar Wealth Management. If you would like to speak with them or simply ask any questions about how custom and trusted wealth management advice is offered to highnet worth individuals with $5 million to $500 million in investible assets, then feel free to start a conversation.
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