Global financial wealth soared to a record high of $250 trillion in 2020, according to a June report by Boston Consulting Group. Big U.S. banks' wealth management businesses have benefited with record levels of new money flowing into accounts and surging demand from clients to borrow against their investment portfolios.
"At the high net worth end of the spectrum, lending products have been very healthy and you're seeing that at firms like Morgan Stanley where wealth management loan balances are up over 30% year over year," said Devin Ryan, an analyst at JMP Securities. Morgan Stanley's wealth management business reported revenues of $5.935 billion, up 28% from last year. Wealth management loan balances reached $121 billion, up 33% year-on-year, mostly from clients taking out mortgages and borrowing against their investments.