A report by Friends Provident International has revealed that investors in Hong Kong, Singapore and the UAE still heavily rely on their advisers, despite undertaking their own research on investment options.
The Investor Attitudes report is now in its fourth year and focuses on how domestic affluent and expatriate individuals choose to invest their money.
The research shows that whilst a large number of respondents in all three regions undertake research themselves before making a financial decision, very few would use their adviser solely to execute transactions.
Financial publications, financial web forums, financial company websites and general finance websites proved to be popular resources across all three regions.
Over a third of investors from both regions seek advice from their friends and family, proving to be a more popular source than financial advisers.
Respondents in Singapore are more likely to seek advice from a financial adviser (41%) than those in the UAE (30%) or Hong Kong (27%), although in all three regions, the likelihood of seeking advice increases with age.
In Hong Kong and Singapore, only five and six percent of respondents would not seek any advice at all, although this figure shoots up to 11% in the UAE. Eleven percent of individuals in both Hong Kong and the UAE rely totally on their financial adviser, which drops to six percent for Singapore.
The majority of people across all three regions still rely on their financial adviser, but always do their own research as a second check.
James Tan, managing director of Friends Provident International said: "We may be in the age of information sharing, with easy access to online advice, but our research suggests individuals in Hong Kong, Singapore and the United Arab Emirates rely most on their family or friends for initial or informal financial advice, but still tend to validate their thinking with financial advisers. The spotlight is hence on advisers to keep up to date with their knowledge and provide value added advice, since investors now tending to use their advisers to confirm their thoughts. This is particularly true in the UAE and Singapore where the numbers are 30 and 39 percent respectively.
"Advisers still play an important role in financial planning; our research shows that the vast majority of respondents still rely on their advisers and there is value in what they do. At the same time, investors like to carry out additional research, which is reasonable for somebody investing a large sum of money. Very few people utilise their adviser for execution only, which we believe is very good news – expert advice should be sought before making investment decisions."