Custodians around the world are doing something right.
The overall score in R&M Consultants' 2004 client satisfaction survey of global custody rose to a record 5.56 from 5.32 in 2003. See table of top-ranked custodians
"That is an all-time high," said Richard Hogsflesh, managing director of London-based R&M Consultants and chief surveyor. "I think it is partly reflective of the fact that the whole process of custody is much more automated these days and that's helped reduce error rates," making clients happier.
The 2004 increase follows gains of 0.13 of a point last year and 0.37 of a point in 2002.
Mr. Hogsflesh added that rising global equity markets most likely contributed to a better mood among custody clients, noting the last decline in the overall score was in 2001, after the severe decline in stock markets around the world in 2000.
Still, "the general sense from everybody across the board is that custody service levels have improved," he said.