Sixty-seven percent said they are hopeful that the country will be more united by the fall and most believed the nation's leaders will put the U.S. on firmer footing. Sixty-eight percent said consumers will increase their savings and 53% expect the S&P to rise during the first half of the year.
Even though the financial advisers surveyed were optimistic about some things, most are not as encouraged with other areas. Ninety-two percent said they believe unemployment will continue to rise and 69% expect the housing market to continue to soften.
In other areas, more than 90% said they have signed on new clients in the last six months. Forty-five percent of them were previously at full service brokerage firms and 25% were former do-it-yourself investors, according to the survey. The No. 1 reason clients from full service brokerage firms gave for switching to independent advisers was a loss of trust in their previous firm (69%). Their desire for more personal advice ranked a close second at 64%. Twelve percent said new clients came through their doors in the
last six months because of concern over their previous firm's subprime mort-
Charles Schwab surveyed the independent financial advisers Jan. 20-30. Collectively, they had more than $300 billion in assets under management.