Pandemic success mixed for Metro’s financial planners

Slight 2021 recovery in the average number of financial planners follows decrease in 2020

B.C.’s financial planning industry has generated mixed results in its business over the past five years, according to data collected on Business in Vancouver’s biggest financial planners in Metro Vancouver list (page 10). The average number of financial planners had been growing relatively steadily until the pandemic caused the average number of financial planners to fall 15.5% to 100.4 in 2020 from 118.8 in 2019.

However, the growth generated by the companies on BIV’s list in 2021 was more than enough to make up for that decline as the average number of financial planners increased 25.8% to 126.3 in 2021.

The median number of financial planners employed at Metro Vancouver firms paints a far less upbeat picture of the local sector during the pandemic. It dropped 45.4% to 38.5 in 2020 from 70.5 in 2019. Not only has the median number of financial planners not recovered from pre-pandemic totals, it also dropped a further 1.3% in 2021. This suggests that while larger companies on the list were able to ride out the pandemic storm and grow, smaller firms lower on the list stayed stagnant. 

Financial planners chart 2 2021

The median dropped to its lowest level since at least 2017. It fell 3.8% below the 2017 median number of financial planners in 2021.

The pandemic decline wiped out two years of growth during which the median number of financial planners grew 82.3% to a high of 72 in 2018. •