Property is back as the favoured asset class of Ireland's financial advisers, who remain bullish about the economy and their businesses.
More than half of 100 advisers surveyed in the Quilter Cheviot 100 Sentiment Survey chose property as their preferred investment sector, ahead of 45 per cent for equities. This is a turnaround from last year, when 57 per cent of advisers plumped for stocks as their preferred asset class.
Cash, bonds and gold were favoured by just 1.2 per cent of respondents.
“It is clear that low interest rates mean that most financial advisers feel that the only prudent course of action is to invest in the riskier – but potentially more lucrative – areas of property and equities,” the report states.
The enthusiasm for property is undiminished by strong growth in the residential sector and commercial prices that are now close to their pre-recession high in Dublin. Quantitative easing in Europe is seen as ensuring interest rates stay low for the medium term.
Overall, the recent return of confidence to the sector continues with 82 per cent of those surveyed saying they felt more confident about the economy than at this time last year.Tax cuts are also back in favour, with more than 35 per cent of respondents saying they would stimulate growth compared to one in four last year.
As a sector, advisers accept they are more likely to rely on fees and less on commission over the next three years. However, almost two-thirds expect to derive most of their income from commission this year.
Quilter Cheviot, which has offices in Dublin and Belfast, is one of the largest discretionary investment firms in the UK, Ireland and Jersey, with about €24.2 billion in assets under management.