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Success And The City

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Summary

Professionals working in the City of London work long hours to get the big deals done but often have little time to manage their own financial planning.

4 min read

The most influential men and women in the City of London often find it hard to keep their own finances on track.

The business and financial pages of the morning papers give us insight into the biggest deals being done in the City of London, which contributes an estimated £45 billion* to the UK’s national income. They are deals that can change industries, boost economies and make careers. It’s work that has everyone from company CEOs to lawyers, accountants and fund managers burning the midnight oil and working through their weekends. Most are prepared to make the sacrifices needed because in the long run, it’s their families that benefit.

It’s a strange irony, however, that these City professionals, who understand and manage the detail of London’s mega deals or run its most successful investment funds, often fail to properly plan for themselves and their families. Although they are financially savvy there are only so many hours in the day and despite having clear financial goals few have a roadmap to achieve them. And those goals tend to be very similar to the rest of the population: achieving financial security, paying school and university fees, and helping their children onto the housing ladder.

“City professionals are incredibly time poor ”

“One commonality faced by City professionals and Executives is that they are all incredibly time poor,” says Rebecca Hughes, Head of Financial Sponsors and Executives at Coutts. “They have their own clients, their own deals going on. It’s very important to them to be able to give their clients great service. Often, they have no time to deal with their own finances. They like to have a plan and a roadmap for their financial security in the future, but they haven’t got time to organise their wealth.”

Of course, time pressure would pose less of a problem if there were a cookie-cutter financial management approach that worked for all successful professionals and executives. But employment arrangements vary massively between – and even within – different industries. A partner in a law firm is classed as a self-employed partner for tax purposes; a partner in a private equity firm is self-employed; an executive in a FTSE 100 company is an employee. Unpredictable bonus payments, share options, partnership distributions and the like complicate financial matters still further.

“Every professional is different, but there are similarities in the trajectories taken during high-level City influencers’ working lives”

In some respects their financial opportunities are surprisingly restricted. A CEO may only be able to put £10,000 into their pension each year and £1m over their career – nowhere near enough to replace their earnings when they retire. A company executive, or a self-employed partner, is likely only to have modest life cover. It’s never enough if, for example, they have three or four children in private school. In addition, they have complex day-to-day banking needs. They frequently travel around the world and need access to 24/7 banking wherever they find themselves. They may want to invest in their dream home while they are still comparatively young, so careful management of debt is a key requirement.

Every professional is different, but there are similarities in the trajectories taken during high-level City influencers’ working lives and the way their banking needs change over the course of their career. Lawyers, investment bankers, hedge fund managers and company CEOs all face similar challenges and opportunities when it comes to their personal finances. Because of this, after working with the City’s leading professionals and executives for many years, Coutts Professionals team and Financial Sponsors and Executives team are on hand to help the Square Mile’s movers and shakers reach their financial goals.

 

*Source: www.cityoflondon.gov.uk/services/environment-and-planning/planning/planning-policy/local-plan/Documents/local-plan-issues-options-final-20160818.pdf

Key Takeaways

Lawyers, investment bankers, hedge fund managers and company CEOs all face similar challenges and opportunities when it comes to their personal finances. Because of this, after working with the City’s leading professionals and executives for many years, Coutts specialists are on hand to help the Square Mile’s movers and shakers reach their financial goals.

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