Insight Discovery’s flagship Middle East Investment Panorama (MEIP) for 2016 found a lot of gloom. Some 63% of advisers saw their clients’ lack of willingness to invest as a threat. Meanwhile, there were not many optimists. Only 18% of advisers saw their clients’ readiness to invest as an opportunity.

In short, it looked as if the advisers had a fundamental problem. The clients appeared set to take a ‘do it yourself’ approach to investment: such clients, by definition, do not need advisers.

Since then, there have been numerous closures of offices and losses of jobs by advisory groups. This has been particularly been true in Qatar and other places outside the United Arab Emirates. Coffee shop gossip, and some reporting in the mainstream media, in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries has been grim.

In fact, about half of advisers surveyed for this year’s MEIP report that they have actually grown their business over the last year. The number of advisers who are optimistic about clients’ willingness to invest has surged to 50%. The number of pessimists has dropped to 41%.

The last year has actually been a good one for a sizeable number of advisers who have met the expectations of increasingly demanding clients.

Insight Discovery’s MEIP report for 2017 can be found here: MEIP 2017