Banking across the wealth Continuum
Citi offers investment opportunities and wealth counselling services tailored to different client segments across the wealth continuum
Citi’s extensive presence throughout Asia and the world allows it to provide a unique platform to wealthy clients in Hong Kong, whether they are just starting on their journey or have growing and complex needs.
Drawing on more than a century of continuous operation in Asia, Citi offers specialist services for clients across the full wealth continuum: Citigold, for mass affluent customers with US$200,000 to US$1 million to invest; Citigold Private Client, for individuals with between US$1 million and US$10 million to be managed; and Citi Private Bank, serving clients with investable assets of more than US$10 million.
Citigold’s reach Citi has more than 30 branches in Hong Kong, as well as online banking and global banking services via its extensive global network, which provides the scale to deliver comprehensive retail and private banking services in a cost-efficient way.
For Citigold Private Client, the bank offers clients the best of both worlds—the convenience of its global banking network alongside a comprehensive private banking service platform. Clients have access to advisory services provided by portfolio counsellors and senior investment specialists who give constructive advice and provide customised advisory services to fulfil clients’ objectives and risk tolerances.
“In today’s volatile markets, investors are more aware of the benefits of diversification and the relationship between risk and return,” says Lawrence Lam, head of Retail Banking, Citibank Global Consumer Banking. “Clients are looking for a wide range of wealth management products and offerings to build a customised portfolio in tune with their experience and risk profile.”
With access to experts in investment, treasury, financial planning and portfolio management, clients can enjoy peace of mind and benefit from customised advisory services that help them to stay abreast of the market.
Citigold Private Client
This year, Citigold Private Client has introduced two new counselling services: Portfolio 360° and Equity Recommendation Service.
Portfolio 360° is a new wealth-counselling tool conducted by Citi’s portfolio counsellors, who are former fund managers with more than 10 years of experience in asset management and investment banking. The analysis examines clients’ total investment portfolio in a structured way and provides constructive advice tailored around clients. Portfolio counsellors will identify potential risks and weaknesses and reveal how to rebalance the portfolio to prevent overconcentration in any sector or asset class.
“So far, we have found that business owners and professionals are more interested in this service. Many clients, for example, and even senior executives, are actually under-diversified because they mostly hold company stock. We advise them on how their investment products are highly correlated to each other and demonstrate how to properly diversify,” says Lam. “Another misconception of clients is that they say they buy enough fixed income products, stocks or funds. But if their holdings are in similar industries then no matter how many products they have acquired, they are not truly diversified.”
Citi has expanded its Equity Recommendation Service to Citigold Private Client this year. Supported by the top research house in Asia, Citi’s senior investment specialists provide personalised recommendations on high-potential sectors and give trading advice on thousands of specific stocks in the Hong Kong, Shanghai and US stock markets.
“The beauty of this service is we are reviewing clients’ overall portfolio, including equity, as a whole,” says Lam.
Citi Private Bank
As clients grow in affluence along their wealth life cycle, they can take advantage of the more bespoke advisory services offered by Citi Private Bank. In addition to their core portfolio of vanilla investments, Private Bank clients have access to distinctive opportunities that can be overlaid on top of their portfolio.
“Clients come to us for investment ideas, insight, innovation and for our network,” says Steven Lo, global market manager, Citi Private Bank in Hong Kong.
“We put all this together to help clients position for the next cycle.” As a truly global bank, Citi can identify diversification opportunities around the world. Whether clients are looking for fresh perspectives on a publicly listed company in China, commercial real estate in Chile or hedge funds out of Chicago, Citi’s private bankers can provide real-time, actionable knowledge and insights.
Many of Hong Kong’s wealthy clients, for example, have significant exposure to local real estate and may consider that valuations are becoming fairly decent in the city. What they require are options for diversification.
Whether a client is interested in development projects or rental collection, Citi can identify and manage opportunities across the spectrum—hotels, offices, shops, strip malls— and offer the ability to co-invest in a private equity-type arrangement.
“At the moment our clients are interested in real estate in the US, London and Tokyo,” says Lo. “Australia is an up-and-coming market because some Hong Kong investors are holding quite a bit of Aussie dollars. We don’t see a major rebound in the currency so we’re helping these clients to find opportunities.”
With an open-architecture platform—an approach that was pioneered by Citi—citi Private Bank supports all types of client interactions, including transactional business, advisory services, customised strategies and discretionary asset management.
Hedge funds are another popular option that can allow clients to position for macro cycles, such as the ageing of the global population, which brings with it increased demand for medical services and medicines. How can clients take advantage of such trends?
In this case, Citi’s research team has identified managers with specialist expertise in medical research, who are using long/short strategies to capitalise on the next breakthrough.
Citi’s private bankers open the door to the best ideas and opportunities that are available, around the world, by relying on a top-tier network. “There are a lot of experts supporting a banker,” says Lo. “A great banker is someone who knows how to orchestrate, is good at relationships and knows when to bring in the right people to talk to the client. At the end of the day, he or she is to serve as a trusted partner to our clients by providing financial services that enable growth and progress for them, in a responsible way. That is our mission.”