Amazon has become the number one largest retailer in the world in a relatively short time in comparison to the number one brick and mortar retailer, Walmart. Despite recent tweets from President Trump, one thing is clear: Amazon has shaped the way we shop and interact with brands.
This has put buyers in control and it is impacting Wall Street, whether investment managers want to admit it or not.
The idea of Wall Street embracing the Amazon effect is a welcome change for an industry that has been too slow to adapt. Technology is leveling the playing field for investors that want transparency and full control of their investments. Let’s face it; the old system of having to meet with your advisor to have access to information or waiting on quarterly reports is gone, as it should be.
For those advisors that embrace change and operate their businesses on this principle, there are always others that fear change and giving the client control. These fearful advisors and financial companies will see their clients leave, just as those companies that don’t partner with Amazon have.
When it comes to technology and your investments, an approach similar to Amazon’s is good for investors. Inside the ‘Amazon of Wall Street’ technology, investors have more options for their investment choices that provide transparency and performance, cost comparisons among investment choices, and aren’t limiting to only products from the broker-dealer or wire house. Just like shopping for a new pair of jeans, investment choices can be categorized, reviewed, and accessed anytime with the use of technology.
We think technology and investing go hand in hand, so we have prioritized technology at SWS Partners. This extends to our portfolio management, operations, and client services. It is a reflection of our belief that investors expect a lot more out of their advisor than a paper monthly statement and random phone calls. Our philosophy is to automate everything that can be automated, so that we can focus on providing advice to our clients. All of the routine blocking and tackling can be handled by technology.
Just like Amazon, financial technology should be cost effective, efficient, and transparent.