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  • by George Tamer
  • Managing Director, Strategic Relationships, TD Ameritrade Institutional

RIAs Confidence in the US Economy and Policy

Registered Investment Advisor (RIA) optimism has slipped a bit, according to our Midyear RIA Sentiment Survey.

In the first part of our survey findings, we shared how your RIA peers spent their summers managing their businesses amidst shifting market trends. Here, we’ll shed light on how fellow RIAs are feeling about the economy, markets and how policy changes will affect them.

We all know that financial markets, government policies and other outside influences affect our outlook. So, it’s no surprise optimism took a little hit, but it’s reassuring to see that RIAs are focusing on the heart of their businesses. Let’s take a closer look at the numbers for more insight.

Optimism pulls back from January high.

The survey found that 60 percent of RIAs are optimistic about the U.S. economy compared to 68 percent in January, while 56 percent doubt the stock market’s momentum will continue through the year-end. Sentiment brightens as RIAs look beyond the U.S. 64 percent are optimistic about the global economy, compared with at 55 percent at the top of the year.

Government policies are front and center.

For most of the year, the U.S. stock market has chugged along hitting all-time highs with low volatility. So why the slip in optimism? Government policies are front and center. Nearly half of respondents say a proposed tax plan would have the greatest impact on their firms. What about the new DOL Conflict of Interest Rule? Just 23 percent believe it will have a positive impact their business, compared with 62 percent who believe it will not impact them at all.

The work continues.

Optimism may have taken a hit, but RIAs are more determined than ever to provide superior service to their clients. What are your thoughts on the economy and policy? Extend the conversation by commenting below, or take the conversation online by following @TDA4Advisors.

Stay tuned for Part Three: Pulling the Midyear Sentiment Survey Findings Together. Here, we’ll discuss what RIAs are doing with their internship programs, and how we feel these surveys can help RIAs like you continue to make smart business decisions.

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