It may seem counterintuitive to launch or revise your financial plan in the middle of a major economic downturn, but experts say now is a perfect time for young professionals to assess their financial goals.
Indeed, money management company Betterment has seen growth in customers since March, when the slowdown started, and more people are depositing funds than withdrawing them, says Jon Stein, the company’s founder and CEO. Stein will share his insights on saving, investing, dealing with debt, and more during a special Fast Company webinar on Wednesday, May 6, at 11 a.m. EST. (You may register here for the free session, a Fast Company Innovation Festival virtual event.)
Stein knows a thing or two about managing in a downturn. He founded the robo-advisor (a new breed of money manager that uses technology to manage investments) in 2008, in the middle of the Great Recession, and formally launched the business in 2010, just as the U.S. economy was starting its 10-year expansion. In that time, Betterment has added checking and cash accounts through partnerships with banks, and it has grown its assets under management to $22 billion. (For comparison, the world’s leading asset manager, BlackRock, has $6.47 trillion under management.)
As Betterment has grown, it has targeted more traditional and wealthier customers, but its core audience remains fairly young. The average customer age is about 36-37 years old, the company says. In contrast, the average age of overall wealth management customers, according to a recent report by McKinsey and Company’s PriceMetrix unit, is about 64 years old.