Chapter 3: Overseeing the fortunes of the global super-rich: the nature of private wealth management in London’s financial district
Up until the early-1980s, the sleepy world of private banking remained a ‘gentlemanly’ affair serving its traditional clientele: royalty, the landed gentry, industrialists and entrepreneurs and, latterly from, for example, the 1970s, the billionaires and millionaires from the Middle East and other foreign jurisdictions (see Maude and Molyneux 1996). But this cosy world of private banking came under fierce competition following the discovery of the private wealth of individuals by wholesale banks and professional service accounting, legal and insurance firms. Financial deregulation on Wall Street and in London from the mid-1980s, combined with the longest running bull market during the 2000s, created astronomical levels of individual private wealth which needed to be ‘managed’. In short, the private wealth management sector grew to service this ever-expanding market. Referring back to Roberts (2008), it is no surprise that many banking, financial and professional services wanted to enter what was to become a new financial services market for the global super-rich, private wealth management (Beaverstock et al. 2012).
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