Advisors Want Romney, But Expect Victory for President Obama

Financial advisors want Mitt Romney to win the 2012 presidential election; yet, a majority expect President Barack Obama to be victorious, according to an SEI Quick Poll released at the end of May. Also, an overwhelming majority believe the November elections will result in a split government instead of a clean sweep by either party.

When it comes to the economy, advisors are both worried and optimistic. They are concerned about the economic recovery and issues in Washington, but predict strong stock-market gains for this year. The group of leading advisors who were polled gave mixed signals on sentiments related to the economy. On the one hand, a majority of them (77 percent) said that the U.S. economy will recover, but it will “take time.” On the other hand, two-thirds said the “pessimism bubble” is here to stay.

When it comes to what advisors are the most worried about, their concerns are not gas prices, interest rates, unemployment, or the housing market. Instead, they are, by a wide margin, entitlements, log jams in Congress, and tax increases next year.

“Regardless of who wins the November election, advisors are keenly aware that what does or does not happen in Washington has a direct impact on the markets and, ultimately, on their clients’ portfolios,” said Steve Onofrio, managing director at SEI Advisor Network. “The challenge for advisors is keeping an eye on the shifting global economic and political landscape while still managing every other aspect of their businesses effectively.”

“At this point, I think most people realize that it’s going to take some time for the economy to fully recover,” added Kenneth Klabunde of City Wealth Advisors in Indianapolis, Indiana. “That being said, there are some positive signs and reasons to be optimistic, and advisors need to communicate that to their clients so that the ‘pessimism bubble’ doesn’t continue to hang over them.”

SEI conducted the survey in May at its National Strategic Advisor Conference for more than 125 advisors who partner with SEI. The advisors, evenly distributed around the country, are industry veterans primarily managing large books of business. Half of them have been in the business for more than 20 years, and an equal percentage manages more than $150 million in assets.

The SEI Advisor Network provides financial advisors with turnkey wealth-management services through outsourced investment strategies, administration and technology platforms, and practice-management programs.

The SEI Advisor Network is a strategic business unit of SEI. SEI provides investment processing, fund processing, and investment management business outsourcing solutions that help corporations, financial institutions, financial advisors, and ultra-high-net-worth families create and manage wealth.

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