Despite an earnings slide of roughly 13 percent compared to 2009, some 94 percent of financial advisors remain satisfied with their career choice, according to a recent poll.

According to the 2011 Survey of Trends in Financial Planning, conducted by the College for Financial Planning, average annual earnings fell to $190,922 during the survey period, from $215,345 in 2009. At the same time, financial advisor compensation is trending heavily toward a mix of fees and commissions. Since 2008, the percentage of financial advisors reporting fees and commissions as their primary method of income has risen by almost half, from 43 percent to 60 percent.

This marks the 13th year of the CFP survey.

The poll also found that advisors identified health care costs as their clients’ most significant concern in 2011, a change from the last survey. As in previous years, however, health care costs and retirement savings continue to figure most prominently among client concerns, edging out worries over tax burden and investment growth.

Also, nearly 90 percent of clients anticipate their standard of living will remain the same or improve after they retire, an expectation that, for many, contrasts with reality. Advisors predict that only 75 percent of clients will maintain or improve their standard of living in retirement.

For complete survey results, visit

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