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Australia lags UK on adviser optimism

New research reveals only 41 per cent of Australian financial advisers are optimistic about the outlook for the industry, compared to 55 per cent of British advisers.

A monthly survey of Australian and UK investment advisers compiled by Marketing Pulse – a research provider to UK and Australian fund managers and financial product manufacturers – found that sentiment is noticeably more positive in the UK.

Asked how they would describe their outlook on the financial planning industry over the next 12 months, only 9 per cent of the 116 Australian financial planners surveyed answered “very optimistic”, with 32 per cent “a little optimistic”, 28 per cent “neutral”, 23 per cent “a little pessimistic” and 8 per cent “very pessimistic”.

By contrast, 16 per cent of the 281 British respondents were “very optimistic” about the outlook for the UK market, followed by 39 per cent “a little optimistic”, 25 per cent “neutral”, 16 per cent “a little pessimistic” and only 4 per cent indicated they are “very pessimistic”.

“Our research has found that UK advisers are much more optimistic about their own industry compared to Australian advisers about the Australian financial planning industry,” Marketing Pulse director Haissam Aoun concluded.

The findings come despite significant regulatory and market changes in the UK, resulting in a 25 per cent reduction in financial planners over 2012.

Figures released by the UK Association of Professional Financial Advisers in July confirmed that the British advice industry is in serious decline, with 10,000 advisers – or one quarter of the advice market – left the industry between December 2011 and December 2012.

“The new report confirms the scale of the drop in adviser numbers over the last few years,” said an APFA statement.