Columbus, Ohio (Jan. 19, 2004) -- CPAs are affluent Americans’ second-most used source of financial assistance, behind financial planners, and nearly one in five investors polled considers a CPA their primary financial advisor, according to a survey by Nationwide Financial.

While tax advice is still the primary service (96 percent) delivered by a CPA, almost half of affluent investors surveyed also view the CPA as a key source of investment advice (45 percent), according to the survey, “State of Advice in America: A High-Income Perspective.” More than 25 percent of affluent respondents consult a CPA for comprehensive financial planning, retirement income planning or estate planning services, Nationwide reported. The survey polled 1,016 respondents with household incomes above $150,000.

“The survey indicates there is great opportunity for CPAs to expand their services, deepen client relationships and potentially grow their business with high-dollar clients,” said Richard A. Karas, president of NFS Distributors Inc., the distribution arm of Nationwide Financial. “Perhaps the greatest advantage CPAs have over other financial professionals is their solid reputation as trustworthy, committed and caring advisors.”

Affluent investors who use a CPA advisor gave them high marks: 47 percent said their advisor is someone they can trust in good and bad economic times, and 40 percent said their CPA advisor makes their bottom line a priority. Among those who use a CPA, 91 percent said their CPA takes time to explain things they don’t understand; 89 percent said their CPA presents an objective analysis; 83 percent said their CPA researches all options; and 82 percent said their CPA stays in touch.

-- WebCPA staff

Register or login for access to this item and much more

All Accounting Today content is archived after seven days.

Community members receive:
  • All recent and archived articles
  • Conference offers and updates
  • A full menu of enewsletter options
  • Web seminars, white papers, ebooks

Don't have an account? Register for Free Unlimited Access