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Asian rich looking to relocate families

The covid-19 crisis has prompted 40% of Singapore wealthy investors to consider moving their families, according to a study by Lombard Odier.
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Although many country borders remain closed to contain the coronavirus, Swiss private bank Lombard Odier found that more high net-worth investors (HNWI) are considering relocating to another country.

In a survey interviewing 620 HNWI, over 40% of the respondents from Singapore said they are currently rethinking the geographical setup of the family, followed by 34% from Thailand and 32% from the Philippines. 29% of Hong Kong-based investors are thinking of relocating, which is slightly more than the Apac average.

“If this were to materialise, it would obviously have a significant impact on banks’ business,” said Lombard Odier.

“A bank that is able to continue advising a client from its domestic country regardless of the client location will have a considerable competitive advantage compared to the bank whose reality is purely onshore.”

Lombard Odier surveyed HNWIs domiciled in eight countries and regions in Asia, across three areas: investments and the global economy, sustainability, and family matters.

The survey also found 60% of respondents across Apac are rethinking other family-related matters, such as succession, family governance, and wealth structuring. However, around half of them have not acted yet.

Lombard Odier believes this is where private banks step in.

“As we move forward and embrace this new normal where ambiguities still abound, HNWIs have shown, through our study, that they are very much relying on their bank’s expertise to guide them through the turbulent environment,” said the private bank.


The study also found that more investors see sustainability a financial opportunity to grasp.

Close to 60% of respondents said they believe sustainability will generate superior returns, compared with 54% last year.

They are also increasingly taking action to include ESG factors into their investments, with 40% of surveyed investors actively increasing the proportion in their portfolio, up from 34% last year.

Nonetheless, Lombard Odier still sees a gap between conviction and action, and believes private banks should not only provide a sustainability offering, but also to continually educate the rich.

Part of the Mark Allen Group.