As published on barrons.com, Tuesday 8 December, 2020.
Cybersecurity is the No. 1 concern for global family offices in the next 12 months, followed by market volatility and geopolitical uncertainty, according to a survey released Tuesday.
Nearly 60% of 78 global family offices surveyed said cybersecurity topped the list of late-night worries, and 96% of respondents have experienced at least one cyberattack, according to The 2020 Family Office Benchmarking Survey by Northern Trust, a Chicago-based wealth management firm.
A family office is a privately held company that manages wealth and business for a wealthy family, generally one with over $100 million in investable assets.
The 78 family offices surveyed by Northern Trust from May to August provide services to more than 800 households and oversee approximately US$200 billion in assets. The vast majority, or 94%, of participants are headquartered in the U.S.
Additionally, 47% of respondents cited geopolitical uncertainty and 46% cited succession planning as their top concerns for the next 12 months.
In terms of investment, the top concern of the global family offices surveyed is U.S. political uncertainty, with 78% respondents ranking it the No. 1 factor. Sixty-three percent of respondents are worried about a potential economic recession, while 60% cited geopolitical uncertainty as a top concern.
Only 16% of family offices are concerned about Covid-19, less than inflation (21%) and interest rates (19%), according to the report.