Poll Finds Positive Money Managers

Fund managers polled late last year were significantly more optimistic about their business prospects than those surveyed at mid-year, according to Cerulli Associates.

A Cerulli news release about its November 2009 Global Asset Management Survey said 72% of asset management firms predicted a greater than 10% hike in their assets under management for the full year—a sizable increase over the 16% who gave that answer in a May survey.

Cerulli said the more positive outlook rested on better-than-expected fund flows and a healthier investment climate. In particular, Cerulli said, respondents pointed to the corporate fixed-income arena as providing fertile “asset-gathering opportunities.”

In terms of product development, the managers pointed to multi-asset investing and the “threat from new products in the shape of exchange-traded funds and structured products.”

As retirement planning evolves, mutual fund penetration is set to rise in Asia, according to Cerulli. “But the recent tightening of distribution will have little to do with it and the gap for advice remains as wide as ever,” Cerulli pointed out.

“All the evidence seems to support the thesis that the global asset management industry has turned a corner,” said Barbara Wall, editor of the Cerulli Edge—Global Edition, in the news release. “While the squeeze on costs will force some firms to consider if asset management is still a core business, successful firms will continue to pursue a policy of strategic, disciplined investment in talent, product innovation, and distribution.”

More information is available at www.cerulli.com.