Despite uncertainty regarding the country’s position in the world after Brexit, the one part of the UK economy that’s still booming is financial management.
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Total assets under management in the UK rocketed by 20% last year to a record £6.9 trillion ($9 trillion), according to the Investment Association annual Asset Management Survey. The bulk of this growth was a direct result of Brexit. The slide in the value of sterling since the vote has increased the value of assets held in other currencies. According to the survey, £2.6 trillion is managed in the UK on behalf of overseas investors, and more than half of this is managed for non-UK European clients -- what will happen to these assets after the UK leaves the European block remains to be seen.
Over the past decade, including last year's boost, assets managed by the UK asset management sector have grown at a CAGR of 11% making the country the world's second-largest asset management center after the US. The financial management industry in the UK is now 373% the size of the country's GDP. US-registered investment company total net assets. $19.2 trillion.
According to analysts at Sanford Bernstein, the UK will need to retain its reputation as a world-leading financial destination if the financial management industry wants to be able to continue to grow.
Financial Management Industry Drivers - Look East
A recent report from the brokerage firm notes that the bulk of the UK assets managed by the industry are concentrated with just a few clients with the majority of UK investors preferring to own property. In total, UK household net wealth is £11.1 trillion of which 40% is pension wealth, and 35% is property wealth. Net financial wealth, which includes stocks, cash, and bonds only accounting for 14. Over 70% of net financial household wealth is held by 25% of households.
Emerging markets are the regions where the most financial wealth growth will come from over the next few decades, and the UK will have to retain its position in the global markets to benefit from this. Bernstein estimates wealth will increase four times faster in Asia Pacific and North America than Europe over the next ten years. Other forecasts suggest that the absolute increase in the wealth of millionaires in Asia Pacific and North America is expected to increase at 9x the rate in Europe over the next ten years. Wealth is projected to grow by $23 trillion in Asia Pacific by 2021 according to Bernstein's forecast, compared to Western Europe's growth of just $8 trillion.