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International Investments, Emerging Markets Key to Weathering Volatility in 2015 Finds Survey of CNBC Digital Financial Advisor Council

Englewood Cliffs, NJ, January 28, 2015 - Volatility has been a key factor for U.S. stocks so far in 2015. A new survey of the CNBC Digital Financial Advisor Council finds that many financial advisors are urging their clients to take a tactical approach to investing this year by putting more money into international investments, particularly in emerging markets.

The CNBC Digital Financial Advisor Council brings together 20 of the nation's leading wealth managers and financial experts with a vast diversity of experience and insight. Formed over a year ago, the Financial Advisor Council members make investment terms and strategies easier to understand through straightforward, informative and relevant columns on and on-air appearances on CNBC.

According to the new CNBC Digital survey, most of the Financial Advisor Council puts stock at the top of their list when it comes to the right place to invest capital this year - ahead of real estate, bonds and commodities. However, members also say investors should be more strategic in their allocation to equities. Additional key findings from the CNBC Digital Financial Advisor Council survey include:

  • More than three-quarters of those polled said that they plan to discuss increasing their clients' exposure to international investments.
  • Nearly 6 out of 10 advisors (59%) said that they favor emerging markets in terms of international exposure. Four in ten favor European investments, despite uncertainty about the European Central Bank's plans to stimulate the region's economy.
  • Almost half of the advisors (47%) said that they see a benefit to a tactical asset allocation that increases emerging markets, while less than a quarter (24%) said that about large cap stocks. Emerging markets, international developed countries and small-cap stocks are the top three asset classes that would benefit from a tactical increase, according to those who responded to the survey.
  • Only 6% of the advisors said investors would benefit from a tactical increase to fixed income.

"This survey provides keen insights into the investment strategies of some leading financial advisors in the industry," said Sharon Epperson, CNBC Senior Personal Finance Correspondent. "The majority of these financial advisors are managing money for retirees, who are focused on investments that generate income. But they also need to see their investments grow since they could be in retirement for decades and need to make sure their money lasts as long as they do."

In conjunction with today's announcement, five new members join the CNBC Financial Advisor Council. They are Shannon Eusey, President & Founder, Beacon Pointe Advisors; Zanellia Harris, President, Harris & Harris Wealth Management; Steve Lockshin, former CEO, Convergent Wealth Advisors; Grant Rawdin, Founder & CEO, Wescott Financial Advisory Group LLC; and Manisha Thakor, Director of Wealth Strategies for Women at Buckingham and The BAM Alliance.

"Just this past December, monthly visitors to our Financial Advisors hub grew by forty percent compared to the same time period last year*," said Jim Pavia, Senior Editor at Large, CNBC Digital. "The demand for quality, long-term investment information is very high. We are proud to welcome new members to our esteemed Financial Advisor Council so we can continue to help our audience better navigate the multitude of complex investment options and strategies available to them."

The CNBC Digital Financial Advisor Council Survey was conducted via email January 12-20, 2015. The majority of respondents manage more than $251 million dollars for their clients and half of them have been in business for 21 years or more.

*Source: Omniture.

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