Affluent Baby Boomers Optimistic, Survey Says

The vast majority of affluent baby boomers believes they will enjoy a retirement lifestyle more active-and prosperous-than their parents', with women intending to be even more energetic than retiring men, according to a new survey that polled 1,000 wealthy Americans.

The Merrill Lynch Affluent Insights Quarterly Survey, which culled data from those with a minimum of $250,000 in investable assets (60% had assets of $250,000 to $1 million; 30% with $1 million to $3 million, 5% with $3 million to $5 million, and 1% to 2% with $10 million and above), is the latest in a series that examines various opportunities and concerns associated with retirement-a market defined by people "living longer, healthier lives, and [who] are able to enjoy not just years but decades more time with family and friends," said Sallie Krawcheck, president of Bank of America Global Wealth and Investment Management. Survey findings offer advice from retirees, reveal gender differences in retirement lifestyle aspirations and examine the important roles that financial advisors and employers play in helping individuals live well longer.

The survey noted that 70% of boomers (ages 46 to 64) plans to keep working, at least part-time, as a means of remaining active and engaged, with 32% pursing additional professional success, 26% continuing their education, 24% learning a new trade, and 20% starting or furthering their own businesses.

"Women are leaning toward an active retirement," Lyle LaMothe, head of U.S. wealth management for Merrill Lynch, said at a presentation for journalists earlier this week. "A lot of fellows just want to find the couch and sit on it for a while."

Some 86% of women intend to travel, according to the survey, compared with two-thirds of men. Nearly two-thirds of women also plan to be involved in their communities, compared with 43% of men, and 62% of women plan to dedicate more time to philanthropic endeavors, compared to 41% of men. While affluent retiring men and women share financial concerns-chief among them the rising cost of health care (64%) and whether retirement assets will last throughout their lifetime (57%)-the concerns were considerably more prevalent among women.

Other findings showed that while 47% of wealthy investors surveyed considered themselves conservative investors, the majority did not understand the impact of investing conservatively-fewer than 10% realized that conservative investing may impede their ability to meet their retirement goals. Some 23% of affluent retirees said that they speak with their financial advisor more now that they are retired, with 42% communicate with their advisor at least monthly, compared to 32% of non-retirees.

To see the complete survey, go here.

In other news ... 

Growth in venture capital investment last year was driven by capital commitments outside of the information technology and health care industries, which are traditionally considered venture capitalists' comfort zones. Throughout 2010, 2,799 venture deals raised $26.2 billion, a 6% increase in deals and an 11% increase in capital invested over 2009, when 2,636 deals raised $23.6 billion, according to Dow Jones VentureSource. Investment in business technologies, consumer solutions and energy companies gained the most traction in the last year, noted Jessica Canning, the company's global research director. Go to for more information.

Fifth Street Finance Corp., a specialty finance company in White Plains, N.Y., that lends to and invests in small and mid-sized companies in connection with investments by private equity sponsors, has commenced a public offering of 10,000,000 shares of its common stock, and plans to grant the underwriters for the offering an option to purchase up to an additional 1,500,000 shares of common stock to cover any over-allotments. Fifth Street said it intends to use the net proceeds from this offering to make investments in small and mid-sized companies, and for general corporate purposes.

A significant portion of households owning financial investments have become more conservative in their saving, asset allocation and choice of retirement age during the past three years, according to new research by the Investment Company Institute. Defined plan contribution participants have "stayed the course" in terms of 401(k) investments, though related loan activity has risen (at the end of September 2010, 18% of plan participants had loans outstanding, compared with 16.5% at year-end 2009 and 15.3% at year-end 2008, according to the report). Visit ICI's 401(k) resource page at for more information.

Billionaire hedge fund manager John Paulson earned an estimated $5 billion in 2010 (despite suffering deep losses in his funds halfway through the year), thanks to bets the economy would recover-besting his own record, which he set in 2007 with a $4 billion haul made off bets against subprime loans, according to The Wall Street Journal. Last year, the average hedge fund gained 10.5%, trailing the Standard & Poor's 500 index by 15% and falling short of their own 19% return in 2009, data from Hedge Fund Research show. Nonetheless, managers will collect 2% management fees and about a 20% cut of their gains, the newspaper noted, adding that other prominent managers such as Appaloosa Management's David Tepper and Bridgewater Associates' Ray Dalio probably also earned 10-figures last year.

EnCap Investments LP, an oil and gas private equity firm, has closed EnCap Energy Capital Fund VIII LP with $3.5 billion of limited partner capital commitments. The fund provides growth capital to management teams focused primarily on the upstream sector of the oil and gas industry in North America. EnCap (, with offices in Houston and Dallas, has managed approximately $11 billion of capital commitments since its inception in 1988.

Wealth-X, a business development tool for private wealth managers and fundraisers, has added to its database nearly 3,000 ultra-high-net-worth individuals whose private philanthropic foundations each have greater than $25 million in assets under management. These individuals represent 920 legal entities, a median average of $50 million per organization and a total of $189 billion in assets under management, according to the New York-based company. Go to for more information.

London-based Campden Media, which through education, news and private networking opportunities serves ultra-affluent business-owning and financial families worldwide, has acquired the Institute for Private Investors, a New York-based membership organization that connects over 1,100 ultra high-net-worth investors, mainly in the U.S., via educational events throughout the year and an active online community that was initiated in 1998. According to Campden, the acquisition (the terms of which were not disclosed) will link financial and business-owning families in Europe, Asia, the Middle East, Russia and the U.S. representing over $200 billion in assets.


NYSSA's 15th Annual Insurance Conference will be held February 7-8 in New York City. Go to or call 212-541-4530 for more information.

NICSA's 29th Annual Conference & Expo will be held February 13-16 at the Doral Golf Resort & Spa in Miami. Speakers include George C.W. Gatch, CEO, JP Morgan Asset Management Americas. Go to for more information.

The 10th Annual VC Outlook NYC 2011 Forum, hosted by Goodwin Procter LLP, a national Am Law 50 firm, will be held on February 15 in New York City. The event will bring together entrepreneurs and prospective venture capital and angel investors.  Go to for more information.

Family Office Exchange will be hosting a Web conference, "Estate Planning Update," on February 16. Contact Jennifer Muntz at 312-327-1211 or by e-mail at for more information. The FOX Web site is

The 2nd Annual Irvine Entrepreneur Forum-IEF 2011-will be held on February 28 in Irvine, Calif. The event will feature a panel of angel and venture capital investors, and will offer insights into the dynamics of startup companies and entrepreneurship. Go to for more information.

The 2011 6th Annual Board of Boards CEO Conference, sponsored by CECP (Center Encouraging Corporate Philanthropy), will be held February 28 in New York City. For information on joining CECP-the event is for member CEOs-go to or call 1-212-825-1000.

The Government of Hong Kong Special Administrative Region will hold its China's Global Financial Center Conference on March 1 at the Plaza Hotel in New York City. The event will debate Hong Kong's role as the gateway to China, its place in the global economy and the development of Hong Kong as Asia's primary asset management hub. Go to for more information.

The 2011 Mutual Funds and Investment Management Conference, sponsored by the Investment Company Institute and the Federal Bar Association, will be held March 27-30 at the JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort and Spa in Palm Desert, Calif. For further information, e-mail or go to

The 2011 Senior Market Advisor Expo, presented by the Colorado-based publication Senior Market Advisor, will be held in Las Vegas August 24-26. For more information, including sponsorship opportunities, go to

On The Move

ActiFi Inc., a software and solutions company based in Plymouth, Minn., that helps financial advisory firms build their businesses, has hired Brian Stimpfl as senior vice president of relationship management. Stimpfl was former managing director of TD Ameritrade Institutional, Advisor Advocacy & Industry Affairs.

Atlantic Trust, the private wealth management division of Invesco Ltd., has expanded the roles of Atlantic's managing directors Sid Queler and Bruce Katz in light of record growth of approximately $1 billion in net assets under management (Atlantic Trust currently has a total of about $17 billion AUM). Queler has been promoted to national director of business development and Katz to director of strategic alliances.

Pershing LLC, a BNY Mellon company, has made a non-controlling investment in HedgeMark International LLC and obtained rights to acquire HedgeMark over time. HedgeMark has offices in Los Angeles and New York. Its platform supports a range of institutional investors and fund managers, including pensions, endowments, foundations and funds of hedge funds.

Main Street Capital Corporation, a principal investment firm headquartered in Houston that primarily provides long-term debt and equity capital to lower middle market companies, announced this week that it has completed a portfolio investment in Denver-based Van Gilder Insurance Corporation totaling approximately $10.7 million in invested capital.

White Oaks Wealth Advisors Inc., a private wealth management firm that serves high-net-worth individuals, has acquired the operations of Intrinzia Family Office LLC, a multi-family office with high-net-worth clientele. Both firms are headquartered in Minneapolis.

-Cort Smith