About one fourth of people with more than $1 million in investable assets do not work with a financial advisor, but market volatility could push them to do so, according to a study by Nationwide Advisory Solutions.

Twenty-seven percent of high-net-worth investors with $1 million to $5 million in investable assets and 22% of ultra-high-net-worth investors with more than $5 million in investable assets do not work with an advisor, according to Nationwide Advisory Solutions’ annual Advisor Authority study. But wealthy investors anticipate more market volatility in the future, which they said would make them more likely to seek the help of an advisor.

Nearly 60% of HNW investors and almost 66% of UHNW investors anticipate market volatility will increase, according to the 1,021 advisors and 824 investors who participated in the study.

Wealthy investors who use an advisor want an advisor who has experience, who provides personalized advice for a holistic financial picture, and who conforms to a fiduciary standard are the top three characteristics they look for. In addition, 72% of HNW and 82% of UHNW investors said there should be one federal fiduciary standard for advisors across the industry.

The study also revealed that concerns about taxes have taken over the top spot for what investors are worried about, narrowly beating out finding ways to protect assets, which was the top concern last year. And even wealthy people are looking for protection against outliving savings in retirement. Fifteen percent of HNW investors and 12% of UHNW investors said generating reliable income during retirement is a top financial concern.

“Helping more affluent investors address their top concerns and manage the dynamics of today’s complex markets are key for gaining their trust and earning their business,” Nationwide said. “The opportunity for advisors is substantial.” Those advisors who can address the investors’ concerns will be able to “compete more effectively for this valuable client segment.”

“While managing taxes and protecting assets remain among their top financial concerns, high-net-worth and ultra-high-net-worth investors need help to identify potential blind spots and bridge the preparation gap, especially in times of uncertainty,” said Craig Hawley, head of Nationwide’s annuity distribution. “RIAs and fee-based advisors say targeting the high-net-worth and ultra-high-net-worth is among the top factors that will enhance the profitability of their practice.”

The optimism of HNW investors fell 10 percentage points to 55% in 2019, as concerns about markets, economics and politics at home and abroad dominated headlines. While facing those same situations, the optimism of the UHNW investors increased 6 percentage points to 64% in 2019. Their optimism may be fueled by the prospects of a finance-friendly tax plan, cuts to regulations and a business-friendly majority in the Senate, Hawley said.

Twenty-six percent of HNW survey participants and 14% of UHNW participants do not have, or do not know if they have, a strategy for dealing with volatility and market changes, the survey said. Those who do have a strategy rely on diversification to manage market risk. UHNW investors are likely to add a more diverse range of solutions, such as fixed annuities, liquid alternatives, market-linked CDs, fixed index annuities, and smart beta ETFs.