CPA Financial Planners Assess New Risk Environment

Eighty percent of CPA financial advisers are strongly recommending a mix of growth and income securities for their clients, according to an online survey of members of the AICPA’s Personal Financial Planning Section. The survey, conducted between April 22 and June 4, showed that CPAs are re-evaluating their clients’ risk tolerance and working to rebalance portfolios, reassess tax planning, and control expenses and cash flow. The respondents were primarily holders of the AICPA’s Personal Financial Specialist (PFS) credential.


Of the 529 survey respondents, 65% are strongly recommending fixed-income securities; 43% are strongly recommending larger cash holdings; and 30% are strongly recommending commodities, gold and precious metals.


Among the survey’s other findings:


  • 67% of respondents said clients are accelerating capital gains in anticipation of future tax increases, while half of their clients are increasing contributions to qualified retirement plans, such as 401(k)s and IRAs. 
  •   In terms of wealth transfer, nearly 60% of survey respondents are recommending paying medical and/or education bills directly for family members.
  • 50% of respondents are recommending that clients make gifts of devalued assets.


More information on the survey results and methodology is available at the AICPA Personal Financial Planning Center at



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