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LACK OF PRIVACY, PORTFOLIO TRACKING SCORE HIGH IN NEW BANKWORKS STUDY

Source: dotCommerce

Posted on March 25, 2001

      The Internet may be emerging as a catalyst in the realignment of the financial industry however privacy remains a concern even among Web-savvy users, results of a study released this week reveal.

      The study conducted by BankWorks, a Toronto market research and consulting firm that focuses on topics related to financials services and technology, examined behaviours and attitudes of "affluent" investors who use financial portals and investment Web sites. Apart from privacy concerns, the majority of the 1,053 respondents also appeared to miss the human touch during their electronic investment sessions. "Even the technology savvy investor doesn't always want to transact online," said Helen Sinclair, CEO of BankWorks and former president of the Canadian Bankers Association.

      "Investors miss the ability to negotiate and the comfort of dealing with an accountable individual. They are also feeling overwhelmed with the quantity of information available."

      Findings were compiled through focus groups and online surveys completed during the fourth quarter of last year. Participants had a minimum of $100,000 in "investable" assets. The research, which was purchased by several Canadian investment banks, investment fund companies, technology firms, discount brokers and full service brokers, also revealed that research and portfolio tracking activities are a lot more important to people than the ability to actually make a transaction.

      The portfolio tracking capabilities of independent portals were generally better than financial institution sites. Plans are underway to conduct a second survey later this year. "You have to keep this information current because it changes so fast," Sinclair said.




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