CUinDenver: Building wealth a CU asset for Gen Y: CUNA Mutual

July 14, 2015

DENVER (7/15/15)--Gen Y’s gap in investment knowledge can be filled by credit unions willing to serve as financial advisers to this generation--one that will experience the largest wealth transfer since the baby boomer generation.

“Without a direct relationship with someone they know, like the family financial adviser, these younger customers are unlikely to appreciate what the financial adviser has done to build and retain the parents’ investments,” said Gary Wueve, vice president of The Center for Advisor Excellence, CUNA Brokerage Services Inc.


Engage Gen Y and millennial investors before the $30 trillion wealth transfer begins, CUNA Mutual Group’s Gary Weuve advises Tuesday’s breakout session. (CUNA Mutual Group Photo)

“There is educational work needed for these new investors to illustrate the value of a financial adviser given Gen Y’s first investment experience was marked by two significant market crashes and market volatility,” Weuve told attendees of Tuesday’s breakout session at the America’s Credit Union Conference and World Credit Union Conference.

The 80 million consumers who make up Gen Y will hold almost $30 trillion in investments, Wueve said. According to CUNA Mutual Group’s “Be in the Moments” research, 60% plan to open a retirement savings account before age 26, 52% plan to open a college savings account for their children and 41% plan to purchase a life insurance policy.

Investing in a retirement plan supersedes other priorities such as starting a family, buying a house and purchasing a car, he said.

Weuve suggested ways to engage this rising tide of investors:

  • As a group, Gen Y has a herd mentality, yet values customization; evaluate direct and social marketing campaigns to align accordingly;
  • Take advantage of Gen Y’s motivation to self-organize friends and colleagues for grassroots activism to align credit union products and services with those values; and
  • Focus on the personal connection and meaningful benefits of the credit union as a banking alternative.

Weuve said, “Prepare for the incoming inheritances; engage them now in the conversation. Meeting their insurance and investment needs today can have greater payoff in the future.”

Click here for more coverage of this year's conference from News Now and Credit Union Magazine.