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Investors Said to Rely on Advisors

Sixty-eight percent of investors rely, at least in part, on advisors to manage their money, according to a Fidelity survey.

The survey involved a random sampling of 1,080 investors across the nation who have $100,000 or more invested in mutual funds or securities. Twenty-six percent said they relied exclusively on a financial advisor to manage their money, 42 percent said they relied on both the Internet and an advisor and 31 percent said they relied only on the Internet, according to Fidelity.

Most investors use the Internet to obtain basic net asset value and share-price information, the Fidelity survey found. Only seven percent use the Internet to conduct financial planning or goal setting. Eight percent seek advice on portfolio strategy and four percent seek help with asset allocation, the survey showed.

The Internet has raised the level of complexity and quality that investors expect from their financial advisors, and financial advisors should see this as an opportunity rather than a threat, Fidelity said. Financial advisors can strengthen customer relationships through customized advice, financial planning and goal setting, Fidelity said.

Fidelity commissioned Forbes Consulting Group, a division of Forbes, the New York publishing firm, to conduct the survey in December 1999.