Market Snapshot

United Arab Emirates

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Almost half of survey respondents from the UAE expressed trust in the financial services sector, and the vast majority remain confident that they have a fair chance to profit in the capital markets. They are not confident, however, in their investment decision-making abilities, and this lack of investing confidence may explain why the majority of survey respondents prefer to invest with the help of financial advisers. Investors from the UAE are entrepreneurial, and, unlike global investors whose investment goals are retirement related, invest to amass enough capital to start a business.

UAE investors place a high priority on returns as a factor in choosing an adviser, and “Ability to achieve high returns” is more important than “Trusted to act in my best interest.” Surprisingly, underperformance is not the most likely reason investors end their relationships with advisers. Their primary reasons are a data breach or a violation of client confidentiality, followed by a lack of communication.

Technology may have an even greater impact on trust in the UAE than in other markets because investors place a much higher value on a firm’s technology solutions than investors do globally. Investors in the UAE say that increased use of technology has made them trust their adviser more, and they are pleased with the amount of technology tools currently provided. A majority of investors in the UAE believe that in three years it will be more important to have technology tools to execute their own strategy rather than human advisers.