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Week’s Best: Wealthy Investors Are Hanging On to Their Cash

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Advisors take note: despite a January increase in consumer prices not seen in four decades, investors are stubbornly clinging to cash positions or cash equivalents like CDs, according to a new survey from UBS. That finding comes amid reasonable concerns about market volatility, to be sure, but advisors might remind clients that cash holdings are generally a loser during times of rising inflation, and then determine how some of that money can be allocated toward long-term goals, according to


UBS

‘ Jason Draho.

In other most-read wealth management articles this week:

Crypto without the coins. When the subject of crypto comes up, most people’s minds will go to Bitcoin, maybe Ether, or coins in general, but there are a host of emerging companies that are involved in building the crypto ecosystem without offering an actual currency. Advisors need to do their homework, but there are potential stock values out there in asset managers and marketplaces, as well as the tech-centered players like Block (formerly Square) that facilitate trading and offer related services.

J.P. Morgan loses arbitration. Five years after


J.P. Morgan

fired an advisor in a dispute over notarized records, an arbitration panel awarded the former employee $1.4 million and agreed to amend the reason for his termination in the public record. The advisor, who had struggled to find work after his termination, objected that he was unaware of J.P. Morgan’s rule against having client documents notarized without the client present.

Citi’s loss, Merrill’s gain. Merrill Lynch has recruited an advisor practice managing $5.5 billion in assets from Citi Private Bank, a coup for the wirehouse as it lands a team that brings in $24 million in annual revenue. The team, which works with ultrahigh-net-worth clients, will join Merrill’s private wealth management division in Miami, a key market for the wirehouse.

CRS compliance woes continue. The Securities and Exchange Commission has settled charges with a dozen advisors and brokers for failing to comply with the requirement to file and distribute a customer relationship summary known as Form CRS. The announcement brings the total number of firms the regulator has busted for Form CRS compliance failures to 42, indicating that advisors and brokers continue to struggle with the filing requirement, which was enacted along with the Regulation Best Interest advice standard.

What clients can teach advisors. Every advisor knows that a major part of their job is sharing knowledge and educating their clients, but it’s a two-way street. In this week’s Big Q feature, top advisors share some of the wisdom they have gained from their work with clients, including the emotional challenges of preparing for retirement, the value of short-term thinking, and the importance of not making assumptions.

What group of investors is most interested in having a positive impact with their capital? It may be the wealthiest segment, based on what John Mallory, co-head of Global Private Wealth Management at


Goldman Sachs
,
told Barron’s Advisor in our weekly Q&A. Of the top 500 clients last year, half had at least one “impact-related investing strategy” within their portfolio, he says. Mallory also discussed clients’ evolving appetite for alternative investments, Goldman’s plans to grow the wealth management business overseas, and helping clients navigate the great wealth transfer.

Have a great weekend.

Write to editors@barrons.com

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