Inside view
GLOBAL FAMILY OFFICE SURVEY

Inside view

The BlackRock global family office survey report combines data aggregated from an extensive online survey completed by 185 family offices globally as well as in-depth interviews with 20 family offices. Explore our insights around market outlook, asset allocation and sustainable investing.
Download full report Download full report
Close dialog

Insights from our survey of family offices across the globe

With the severe health and economic crisis, 2020 was a year like no other, presenting investors with both challenges and opportunities. Against this backdrop BlackRock and Juniper Place are delighted to have partnered to learn more about the experiences and plans of 185 family offices across the globe.

All family offices are unique, and this is reflected in how they have responded to the crisis. However, through this survey and the in-depth interviews we conducted, we have identified three key themes.

Key themes
01

Portfolios prove resilient but concerns grow

Family office portfolios have proved resilient during this period of uncertainty but there are growing concerns, particularly around geographical diversification, equity valuations, liquidity needs and the spectra of inflation.

02

Alternatives as a source of diversification and returns

Private markets and alternatives continue to be a key focus for clients seeking diversification and to potentially enhance returns.

03

Increased interest in sustainable investing

There is a recognition there may not be a need to sacrifice financial returns in order to adopt sustainable investment strategies, and there is greater interest and pressure from the next generation of family members to better reflect their values.

Market outlook: resilience in the face of uncertainty

Our survey indicated that despite a challenging economic outlook, few family offices felt the need for material change to their portfolio. Many family offices cited their long-term investment horizon and high allocations to alternatives as the driver of this. However, family offices have growing concerns, particularly around diversification, equity valuations, liquidity needs and the spectra of inflation. BlackRock’s Investment Institute (BII) would argue that the nature of the crisis and its long-term implications warrant a review of asset allocations.

Family office outlook on markets from negative to positive

BlackRock Global Family Office Survey, August 2020

Remaining calm

In uncertain markets, family offices have been relatively unflustered, with only 23% anticipating making material portfolio changes. Their outlook is cautious to marginally negative.

Growing concerns

Many family offices indicated that their portfolios have proved resilient during recent turbulence but their concerns over portfolio diversification are growing, and new challenges have arisen.

Emphasis on geographical diversification

Given the need to diversify portfolios and access economic growth beyond core markets, family offices stated they will place greater emphasis on geographical diversification.

Asset allocation: the growing importance of alternatives

Despite challenges, private equity remains the alternative investment of choice. Private debt, real estate and infrastructure are all seen as capable of generating long-term yields. Hedge funds appear to be enjoying a resurgence as many recognize that they could be well placed to profit from a more volatile and dispersed environment.

Family office allocation to alternatives in the next 5-10 years

BlackRock Global Family Office Survey, August 2020

Taking advantage of illiquidity

Given their long-term investment horizon, family offices actively look to exploit the illiquidity and other risk premia provided by alternative asset classes.

Attraction of entry into dislocated markets

Private equity and private debt are key areas of focus, with many looking to increase their allocations, driven by the perceived attractiveness of the current entry point in dislocated markets.

Refocus on hedge funds

Many family offices noted they are focusing once more on hedge fund strategies as they contemplate their risk-adjusted returns in more volatile market conditions.

Sustainable investing: from interest to action

80% of family offices are engaged in some form of sustainable investing and the trend looks set to continue. This is driven by the values of the next generation of family members alongside heightened public awareness. Our survey indicates family offices believe that sustainable strategies no longer require compromising investment returns. However, addressing the remaining hurdles of education and the absence of common impact measurement methodologies could lead to more widespread integration.

Current family office portfolio allocation to sustainable investments

BlackRock Global Family Office Survey, August 2020

Becoming mainstream

80% of family offices are now interested and engaging in some form of sustainable investment.

Acceleration by the next generation

Family offices are not driven by financial profit alone. Values and legacy also matter. The next generation of family members are driving acceleration of this trend.

Not compromising performance

The need to compromise on performance is no longer perceived to be reality or a constraint.

Discover the global family office survey results
The BlackRock global family office survey report combines data aggregated from an extensive online survey completed by 185 family offices globally as well as in-depth interviews with 20 family offices. Explore our full insights around market outlook, asset allocation and sustainable investing.
Download full report Download full report
Close dialog
Discover the global family office survey results

Receive BlackRock's family office insights directly to your inbox

Please try again
First name *
Please enter a valid first name
Last name *
Please enter a valid last name
Organization type *
This field is mandatory
Organization
This field is mandatory
Title
This field is mandatory
Business email *
Please enter a valid email
Location *
This field is mandatory
Thank you
Thank you for subscribing!
You'll be the first to receive BlackRock's latest thought leadership and investment ideas to your inbox. In the meantime, explore our website to read insights on the markets, portfolio design and more.