J.D. Power and Associates Reports: The Role of Investment Advisors Becomes Increasingly Critical As Overall Satisfaction With Investment Institutions in Canada Declines Amid Volatile Market Conditions



    Edward Jones Ranks Highest among Full-Service Investment Firms for a
    Third Consecutive Year

    TORONTO, June 25 /CNW/ - As the investment market experiences increased
turbulence amid economic uncertainties, the expertise and guidance of
investment advisors is becoming more important in enhancing overall customer
satisfaction, according to the J.D. Power and Associates 2008 Canadian
Investor Satisfaction Study(SM) released today.
    Now in its third year, the study provides benchmarks for investor
satisfaction that allow individual investment institutions in Canada to
evaluate how they compare to competitive firms. Six factors are used to
evaluate overall investor satisfaction with full-service investment firms and
financial institutions offering wealth management and private banking
services: account set-up and offerings; account statements; convenience; cost;
investment advisor; and investment performance.
    The study finds that overall investor satisfaction has decreased to 720
on a 1,000-point scale in 2008-down from 763 in 2007 among full-service
investment firms. Specifically, the most significant decline among all factors
examined in the study is satisfaction with investment performance.
    "After a long-standing bull market in Canada, which lasted nearly five
years, the financial market has experienced downward turbulence, particularly
in the last quarter of 2007 and first quarter of 2008," said Lubo Li, senior
director of research at J.D. Power and Associates. "Since investor
satisfaction with portfolio performance is greatly impacted by market
conditions, it is vital that advisors become proactive in assisting and
guiding their clients to alleviate anxiety about an unpredictable market. In
fact, the importance of the advisor as a driver of overall satisfaction has
increased considerably - up from 24 percent in 2007 to 36 percent in 2008 in
the full-service segment."
    For a third consecutive year, Edward Jones ranks highest among
full-service investment institutions in Canada with a score of 758. Edward
Jones performs particularly well in three of the six factors: investment
performance; account set-up and account offerings; and convenience. Berkshire
Investment Group Inc. (752) and Wellington West Capital Inc. (747),
respectively, follow in the rankings.
    The study finds that investors who have high levels of satisfaction are
contacted more often by their advisors and give their advisors more authority
to make decisions. Highly satisfied investors report being contacted by their
advisors an average of five times in the past 12 months, while investors with
low levels of satisfaction report being contacted an average of only two times
in the same period.
    "Investors who have higher levels of satisfaction have more money
invested with their primary financial institution, make more trades, and
recommend their advisors and firms more often," said Li. "For example,
65 percent of highly satisfied investors report that they will definitely
recommend their investment firms to others in the next 12 months. As a result,
the investment firms stand to reap financial benefits by increasing levels of
satisfaction among their investors."
    The 2008 Canadian Investor Satisfaction Study is based on responses from
6,240 investors who use investment services with financial institutions in
Canada. The study was fielded in May 2008.

    About J.D. Power and Associates

    Headquartered in Westlake Village, Calif., J.D. Power and Associates is a
global marketing information services firm operating in key business sectors
including market research, forecasting, performance improvement, training and
customer satisfaction. The firm's quality and satisfaction measurements are
based on responses from millions of consumers annually. For more information
on car reviews and ratings, car insurance, health insurance, cell phone
ratings, and more, please visit JDPower.com. J.D. Power and Associates is a
business unit of The McGraw-Hill Companies.

    About The McGraw-Hill Companies

    Founded in 1888, The McGraw-Hill Companies (NYSE:   MHP) is a leading
global information services provider meeting worldwide needs in the financial
services, education and business information markets through leading brands
such as Standard & Poor's, McGraw-Hill Education, BusinessWeek and J.D. Power
and Associates. The Corporation has more than 280 offices in 40 countries.
Sales in 2007 were $6.8 billion. Additional information is available at
http://www.mcgraw-hill.com.

    No advertising or other promotional use can be made of the information in
this release without the express prior written consent of J.D. Power and
Associates. www.jdpower.com/corporate

    
                       NOTE: Ranking Chart Upon Request
    




For further information:

For further information: Media Relations Contacts: Mark James, Cohn &
Wolfe, Toronto, ON, Canada, (647) 259-3269, Mark.james@cohnwolfe.ca; Alexandra
Cygal, Cohn & Wolfe, Toronto, ON, Canada, (647) 259-3266,
alexandra.cygal@cohnwolfe.ca; John Tews, J.D. Power and Associates, Troy,
Mich., United States, (248) 312-4119, john.tews@jdpa.com

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