New Study Says Include Professional Planners in the Mix


Most financial institutions rely on financial advisors to prepare and deliver financial plans.  But a new Kehrer Bielan study sponsored by Ameriprise Financial Institutions Group found that firms that deliver planning through both advisors and a centralized planning unit achieve deeper planning penetration.


Eighty-five percent of 87 banks and credit unions surveyed turn to financial advisors to provide all planning services to their clients.  Only 2% provide all planning through a centralized planning unit, while another 13% supplement the planning efforts of the advisors with professional planners.


On average, the firms that delivered planning through advisors created plans for only 3.92% of their investment clients during 2019.  Given the relatively low penetration of investment services in financial institutions, that means that new plans were created for 0.12% of each bank’s customer households, on average.


New Planning Households as a Percent of Bank Customer Households New Planning Households as a Percent of Investment Client Households
Financial Advisors only 0.12% 3.92%
Centralized Unit only 0.35% 5.35%
Both 0.54% 6.12%


The few firms that provide planning services solely through a group of professional planners created new plans for an average of 5.35% of the firm’s investment clients during the year.  That amounts to twice the new plan penetration of the banks’ customer households.  But the hybrid approach of supplementing advisors with a centralized planning unit had even better penetration, reaching an average of 6.12% of investment clients and 0.54% of bank customer households.


These are among the findings of The Status of Financial Planning in Financial Institutions published in November.  Complimentary copies of the study are available.  Click here to download a complimentary copy of the study.


With more than 25 years* serving the investment program needs of local banks and credit unions, Ameriprise Financial Institutions Group brings a depth of understanding, experience and knowledge to the financial institution space — helping deliver value for clients and members while driving revenue for the affiliated institution.


For more information, visit or call us at 800.679.1237.



*Investment Professionals, Inc (IPI) was founded in 1992 and specialized in the on-site delivery of investment programs for financial

institutions. Ameriprise Financial, Inc. acquired IPI in 2017 bringing together the years of experience of the two organizations.

The Status of Financial Planning in Financial Institutions study was fielded in the summer of 2019. Kehrer Bielan surveyed 87 banks and credit unions that offer financial planning services. These institutions included 74 financial institutions that work with third-party BDs (TPBDs) and13 bank-owned broker dealers. Collectively, the 87 institutions deploy 2,927 advisors.

The institutions reported the number of new households engaged in planning, along with other detailed information about the firm’s financial planning practice.

Ameriprise Financial and Kehrer Bielan are not affiliated.

Investment products are not federally or FDIC-insured, are not deposits or obligations of, or guaranteed by any financial institution, and involve investment risks including possible loss of principal and fluctuation in value.

Investment advisory products and services are made available through Ameriprise Financial Services, LLC, a registered investment adviser.

Securities offered by Ameriprise Financial Services, LLC. Member FINRA and SIPC.