Jonathan Higbee's picture

New Study On Wealthy Gays

A new survey of the wealthy segment of the LGBT community reveals pretty much exactly what we expected: affluent gays behave pretty much just like rich heteros. 

From the press release announcing the Spectrem Group study:

A new Spectrem Group study of affluent LGBT investors reveals that while their investing preferences are generally similar to those of affluent non-LGBT investors, they tend to be more conservative and less diversified in their investing preferences, while indicating higher overall satisfaction with their financial advisor. At the same time, many affluent LGBT investors feel that their legal and advising needs are not well understood. The study, Advising the Affluent LGBT Investor, was conducted by Spectrem Group and looks at investors of various ages and wealth levels within the affluent LGBT community. 

Despite having similar occupations and education levels to wealthy non-LGBT investors, overall investment knowledge is lower for wealthy LGBT households, particularly for Ultra High Net Worth investors ($5 million to $25 million, not including primary residence (NIPR)). Wealthy LGBT investors are also more worried about receiving help and advice than non-LGBT investors and more likely to seek it. 

“At first glance, the profile of the affluent LGBT investor is similar to the wealthy non-LGBT investor,” said George H. Walper, Jr., president of Spectrem Group. “But there are key differences. Wealthy LGBT investors tend to have less diversified portfolios, while demonstrating higher social media use and a preference for conservative investing. Wealthy LGBT investors also have unique needs regarding their trust and estate planning. They want to work with professionals who are familiar with their financial challenges, whether those professionals are attorneys, financial planners, bankers or financial advisors.” 

Among wealthy LGBT investors, the study also showed key differences between males and females. Female LGBT investors are most concerned with financial rights and equal opportunities, scoring 5-17 percentage points higher than males. Fifty-two percent of females are also more likely to prefer a financial organization with a specialty area that addresses the needs of the LGBT community compared to 44 percent for males. 

Other findings from Advising the Affluent LGBT Investor include: 

  • Only 34 percent of wealthy LGBT investors feel their primary financial advisor understands the unique situations of the LGBT community.

  • Nearly half would be more likely to use a financial organization that had a special area to address the needs of the LGBT community.

  • Forty-six percent say they’re likely to start or increase services at law firms and 41 percent with independent financial planners, compared to non-LGBT investors’ response of 16 percent for law firms and 22 percent for independent financial planners.

  • Compared to wealthy non-LGBT Investors, wealthy LGBT are more satisfied with their advisors overall (82 percent vs. 73 percent of non-LGBT).

  • Wealthy LGBT investors are significantly more socially responsible – the majority place importance on socially responsible investments versus 33 percent of non-LGBT investors.

  • Wealthy LGBT investors use social media more than non-LGBT (67 percent vs. 57 percent).