Investment house reveals demand jump amid COVID panic

A high profile financial services group has noted it has experienced a significant jump in turnover over the last few weeks as investors look to trade more actively following the share market turmoil caused by COVID-19.

In a business update to the market on Monday, Sequoia Financial Group noted that in the month since its latest results announcement, the firm had seen turnover in its online trading business, Morrison Securities, soar and was moving to ensure remote services would be available to clients in order to deal with demand.

“Given the turmoil in markets, Morrison Securities Pty Limited has experienced record turnover over the past two months and has a large pipeline of additional AFSL holders now seeking our services,” the group said.

“Fortunately we have the capability to maintain continuous service levels throughout all types of conditions, hence our business is strong, with turnovers increasing by approximately 40 per cent since the reporting of our half-year results.”

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The company added that it was in a positive position due to increasing demand for advice during the market crisis, and was on track to complete its acquisition of Yellow Brick Road’s wealth division in late March.

“Almost all income from the group’s financial advisers is on a ‘fee for service’ basis and is not a function of the amount of funds under advice. Market movements do therefore not impact it either,” the group said.

“On the contrary, the impact of volatile markets typically sees a spike in new client demand, particularly from those who haven’t previously engaged an adviser.

“From a growth perspective the previously announced acquisition of Yellow Brick Road advisers remains on track to settle on 27 March 2020, with 45 adviser applications now approved, and this will allow us to broaden the reach we have across the adviser community.”

The company announced in late February that it had acquired Yellow Brick Road’s wealth division for $2.5 million, to be paid in four instalments over 18 months.

A significant stake in Sequoia had been acquired by listed wealth platform group OneVue as a result of fintech Sargon Capital falling into administration, which OneVue then announced it had offloaded for $4.36 million on 24 February.

Investment house reveals demand jump amid COVID panic
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