Financial Services

Wealth  Weekly Insights: Understanding investor values and specialized needs

According to the recently released J.D. Power 2021 Canada Full-Service Investor Satisfaction Study, Millennials and Gen Z1 investors who strongly believe their investment firm is committed to ESG (environmental, social and corporate governance) investing are twice as likely to increase their investment compared with those who don’t perceive this commitment (31% vs. 16%, respectively). With nearly $700 billion in financial assets poised to be transferred to the next generation in Canada by 2026, full-service wealth management firms need to do a better job of catering to the needs and values of this emerging demographic of younger investors or risk losing current and future business. 

Younger investors who strongly believe their investment firm is committed to ESG are much more willing to act as avid brand ambassadors while those who say they don’t see a commitment become detractors. The study also shows that 22% of investors under age 40 clearly see the commitment for ethical investing from their full-service investment firm, while 46% say they either have doubts about their firm’s commitment to ESG or don’t know about it. This trend is echoed among older age groups as well.

We are at the tipping point of a massive generational wealth transfer. Investors in Canada—especially younger ones—increasingly want their investments to align with not only their financial goals but also their values. Wealth management firms and advisors have a critical role to play in helping them do this, and they can’t afford to wait for clients to ask them about it.

The Canada Full-Service Investor Satisfaction Study, now in its 16th year, is redesigned for 2021. As a result of the study redesign, scores are not comparable to those of previous years. The study measures overall investor satisfaction with full-service investment firms in seven factors (in order of importance): people; trust; products and services; value for fees; ability to manage wealth how and when I want; problem resolution; and digital channels.

Join our mailing list to get updates on the study and learn how you can subscribe to the 2022 study. 

J.D. Power in the News  

Wealth Professional (Canada): Wealth firms must show ESG commitment to grow, says J.D. Power
Survey of investors at full-service firms reveals need to accommodate values and specialized needs

Investment Executive (Canada): Canadian firms risk missing out on young investors: study
J.D. Power ranked wealth management firms based on investor satisfaction

Recommended Readings

The Wall Street Journal: Many women of color use social media, peers for investment advice
As financial advice becomes popular on social-media platforms, some women say they don’t need an adviser

Many women of color are turning to social media and their peers for investment know how instead of hiring financial advisers.

Individual investors are increasingly seeking free financial advice on platforms including TikTok, Twitter and YouTube. For women of color, nearly half say they are likely to turn to social media for financial guidance compared with 18% of white women, according to a study released in April by investment-management firm Capital Group.

The reasons for turning to their peers range from wanting free advice to a desire to manage their own portfolios, rather than outsourcing it to an adviser.


1J.D. Power defines generational groups as Pre-Boomers (born before 1946); Boomers (1946-1964); Gen X (1965-1976); Gen Y (1977-1994); and Gen Z (1995-2004). Millennials (1982-1994) are a subset of Gen Y.