Shifting horizons: How family offices are responding to rapid economic and social change

By Vincent Hayes - BNY Mellon Wealth Management

Over the past few years, the world has experienced a global public health crisis, social tensions, technological disruptions and economic turbulence unseen in decades. As a trusted partner and advisor to family offices, BNY Mellon Global Family Office partnered with The Harris Poll to find out how this select group was adapting to these massive and rapid interruptions across the globe.

Do family offices foresee opportunities or challenges? Our first family office survey aims to answer this question by providing insights that can help the global family office community chart its course in a fluid social and economic landscape. We explore this evolving terrain through the lenses of philanthropy, succession planning, cryptocurrencies, private banking, and taxation and regulation.

Drawing on our breadth and depth of institutional capabilities, innovative technology and 50 years of family office expertise, BNY Mellon Global Family Office helps our clients meet the complex needs of the multi-generational families they serve. Our world-class investment management and custody solutions, sophisticated estate planning and fiduciary support, customised wealth planning and top-tier private banking have advanced the family office industry across geographies and generations. BNY Mellon’s unwavering commitment to serving today’s modern family office has led us to partner with The Harris Poll to produce this report.

Image by Aleksey Kuprikov

The key takeaways from the report are as follows:

Philanthropy management
Nearly three-quarters (73%) of family offices are involved to some degree in philanthropy, with 30% having a documented strategy. Among offices involved in philanthropy, one in five oversee charitable grants of at least $25 million.

Next gen & succession planning
Succession planning is viewed as extremely or very important by two out of three (66%) family offices. Many offices admit they could use external help in succession planning, as finding a trusted partner can be difficult.

More than three out of four (77%) family offices have at least some interest or involvement in cryptocurrencies. Among those actively investing, four in ten (40%) deem it important to their overall investment strategy and more than two-thirds in this group plan to increase their holdings.

Private banking
Only three in ten (29%) family offices currently facilitate private banking services for their clients, with capital markets (brokerage services, mutual funds), cash management and credit and lending provided most often. When choosing a private banking partner, offices are most interested in up-to-date technology for online banking and mobile access, competitive loan rates and foreign exchange services.

Family office regulation
More than eight in ten (81%) perceive increased regulatory oversight on family offices as government intrusion on family finances. Similarly, about eight in ten (78%) perceive governmental oversight as an impediment to family offices’ ability to fund ventures that boost the economy.

To learn the perspectives of 200 family office decision makers across all major geographic regions, please read the full report.

BNY Mellon is the corporate brand of The Bank of New York Mellon Corporation and may be used to reference the corporation as a whole and/or its various subsidiaries generally. This material does not constitute a recommendation by BNY Mellon of any kind. The information herein is not intended to provide tax, legal, investment, accounting, financial or other professional advice on any matter, and should not be used or relied upon as such. The views, insights and positioning statements expressed within this material are those of the 200 Family Office decision makers and not necessarily those of BNY Mellon. BNY Mellon assumes no direct or consequential liability for any errors in or reliance upon this material.

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