Merrill Edge Still Getting Attention With Its Insight Into How The Mass Affluent Think


For example, Bank of America's Merrill Edge program -- essentially a high-end but no-frills version of a full-fledged private banking relationship -- made our radar two months ago with headlines about how the entry-level affluent investor suffered in the recession.


But that original release is still floating around out there, most recently popping up in Reuters and Dow Jones as Exhibit A arguing for a crisis of confidence in the investor class. 


After several years of relentless spin -- either cheerleading or panic -- from the media, it seems likely that only the advisors now know how exactly the affluent feel about the market. Self-directed upper-middle-class families may truly be terrified by the prospect of a double-dip recession, or may only be following the self-fulfilling lead of the financial media.


Either way, it's an opportunity for advisors to either diagnose and dispel fear, on the one hand, or clap their clients on the back for being brave enough -- with the right advice, naturally -- to stay the course.




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