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Most Consumers Open to Robo-Only Retirement Advice

January 30, 2017

Most people are willing to trust robo-advisors for retirement planning and investment advice, but the majority also want human interaction when it comes to more complex tasks, according to a new survey from consulting firm Accenture.

Sixty-eight percent of people are open to robo-only advice for retirement planning and 78% say they’d welcome it for investing advice, according to a survey of close to 33,000 consumers, of which close to 10,000 were working with a professional wealth or asset manager, in 18 countries and regions conducted in May and June by Accenture.

And yet 68% of respondents say they’d prefer to deal with a human if they have complaints and 61% want to talk to an actual person about complex financial decisions such as mortgages, according to the survey. In addition, 73% of those surveyed want to get personalized advice in wealth management, and most consumers are willing to give up personal information to get tailored services.

(Getty)

Nonetheless, Accenture also found that 38% of consumers would switch to Google, Amazon or Facebook for financial advice services, while only 31% would go to one of the tech giants for banking and 29% for insurance.

The good news for financial advisors is that consumers aged 18 to 21 years old are only slightly more likely to switch to a Google or Amazon for financial services, so even younger generations apparently still find value in traditional financial advice. Therefore, financial services firms need to adapt a “phygital” strategy that combines physical human staff support at easily accessible branches with digital technology, Accenture claims.

By Alex Padalka