Wealth Management Terms

Wealth Management and WealthTech is a constantly changing landscape. It can be hard to keep up. Our handy glossary has been designed to help you get to grips with some of the words and terms you might come across – with short, straight-forward definitions. We hope you find it useful.

Accredited Investor

What is an accredited investor? An accredited Investor is an individual or entity in Singapore that meets specific financial criteria and is allowed to invest in certain types of securities that may not be available to the general public.


What is an advisor in financial terms? An advisor refers to a dedicated expert working for a financial planning firm, private bank or wealth manager, who provides professional assistance and guidance to its clients. An advisor will aim to support clients in making informed decisions, solving problems, and achieving their goals. An advisor is sometimes referred to as a financial advisor (FA), relationship manager (RM), wealth manager (WM) or private banker (PB).

AI (Artificial Intelligence)

What is AI? Artificial intelligence is the use of computer technology to mimic the problem-solving abilities of the human mind; not to be confused with process automation. Applied into the private banking and wealth management industry, with consideration for client life-cycle management in particular, applications include: risk assessment of prospects and customers, commercial viability assessments, cross-sell and upsell recommendations and automated trend identification across complex sets of customer and process related data.

Alternative Investments

What are alternative investments? Alternative investments are non-traditional investments, such as hedge funds, private equity, real estate, commodities, and venture capital, offering potential diversification benefits but often carrying higher risks.


What is AML in wealth management? AML in wealth management stands for anti-money laundering. AML refers to a set of laws, regulations, and procedures implemented to prevent and combat money laundering and other illicit financial activities.  The purpose of anti-money laundering measures is to detect and deter money laundering activities, terrorist financing, and other financial crimes.  For financial institutions, such as private banks and wealth management firms, compliance begins with verifying the identity of new clients – which is referred to as Know Your Customer and Customer Due Diligence which applies to both new and existing customers. As such these checks need to be undertaken throughout the customer lifecycle.


What is an API?  An API, or application programming interface, is a set of rules and protocols that allows different software applications to work together seamlessly, enabling them to share and utilise each other's capabilities and data. In developing customer relationship management (CRM) or customer lifecycle management (CLM) platforms, the use of APIs is critical in orchestrating the providers within the ecosystem, so that ultimately, the new CRM or CLM enhances any overall management system rather than disrupts it. These APIs can consist of technology vendors and back-office platforms which are configured to fetch/collect data and process information along predefined workflows for both front-office and middle office teams.

Asset Allocation

What is asset allocation in financial terms? Asset allocation is the process of distributing an investment portfolio among different asset classes (e.g. stocks, bonds, real estate, cash) to achieve a balance between risk and return based on the client's financial goals and risk tolerance.

Assets Under Advice (AUA)

What are assets under advice? Assets under advice (AUA) is the total value of investments for which the investment adviser has provided advice, irrespective of whether the firm itself has implemented this advice or provided custody for the assets. This can include services such as financial planning and consultancy.

Assets Under Management (AUM)

What are assets under management? Assets under management (AUM) is a financial term that refers to the total value of assets that a financial institution, such as a bank, investment firm, or wealth management company, manages on behalf of its clients. These assets can include various types of investments, such as stocks, bonds, mutual funds, real estate, and other financial instruments.

Back Office

What is a back office in wealth management? The back office relates to the section of a wealth management firm or private bank is made up of non-client facing employees such as administration and support personnel. Often, back-office functions include settlements, clearances, record maintenance and accounting. Typically, wealth management firms refer to the teams responsible for supporting client management as front office, middle office. and back office

Banking Act

What is the Banking Act? The Banking Act refers to legislation in Singapore that governs banking business and related activities.

Big Data

What is big data? Big data refers to large sets of data that can be analysed computationally to reveal patterns, trends, and associations, often used to enhance risk assessment and customer profiling in financial services.

Challenger Banks

What are challenger banks? Challenger banks are digital banks or neobanks that operate primarily through mobile applications, offering innovative and customer-centric financial services.

Client App

What is a client app? A client app is used to provide a user-friendly platform for clients to interact with and will offer a personalised experience. From this platform, clients can usually make transactions, view account balances, manage investments and communicate with their advisor. Also see Client Portal

Client Lifecycle Management (CLM)

What is client lifecycle management?  Client lifecycle management (CLM) is the process and activities involved in managing the entire lifecycle of a client relationship within a business or organisation.  It typically includes tasks such as client identification, customer due diligence (including KYC, AML, ID&V, risk profiling, ESG and Suitability), client onboarding, account opening, ongoing client communication, risk assessment, compliance monitoring, and relationship enhancement.

Client Onboarding

What is client onboarding?  Client onboarding is the process of welcoming a new client into an organisation. It involves gathering and verifying client information, completing necessary documentation, and establishing a relationship with the client.

Client Portal

What is a client portal?  A client portal is a secure online platform that acts as a digital gateway and allows advisors to communicate, collaborate, and share information with their clients. Also see Client App

Client Relationship Management

What is client relationship management? A CRM tool provides the ability to manage client and prospective clients, the communications and basic information for said clients. However, a CLM system (Client Lifecycle Management) within the wealth management and private banking sector takes a much broader approach, covering a range of additional functionalities to cover the full client lifecycle.

Client Remediation

What is client remediation? Client remediation is the process by which firms identify potential gaps in their client records (For example missing KYC or Tax Information) and follow a process to ‘remediate’ these gaps, ensuring a complete and accurate client file.

Client Reviews

What are client reviews? Client reviews refer to feedback, opinions, or assessments provided by clients of a service. These reviews typically reflect the client's experience, satisfaction level, or dissatisfaction with the product, service, or overall interaction with the organisation. Firms are often required through regulation to complete these on a periodic basis.


What is CLMi? CLMi is a cost-effective, cloud-based Client Lifecycle Management (CLM) platform for mid-size discretionary fund and investment managers that eliminates manual administration, accelerates client service, ensures timely recommendations and optimises cost-to-income ratio for wealth management advisors.  CLMi is a mobile-first SaaS solution that provides single sign-in access to a holistic view of each client relationship, spanning the full client lifecycle: from initial engagement and onboarding through to ongoing relationship management.

Cloud Technology

What is cloud technology? Cloud technology delivers computing services, including storage, processing power, applications, and databases, over the internet. It involves the use of remote servers, hosted by third-party providers, to store and process data rather than relying on local servers and personal computers.

Compliance (See regulatory compliance)

What does compliance mean?  Compliance is the act of adhering to laws, regulations, rules, standards, and internal policies that govern an organisation's operations and conduct.

Consumer Duty

What is Consumer Duty? The Consumer Duty Act applies to UK Financial services firms operating in the UK. Consumer Duty refers to the responsibilities and obligations of financial firms towards their customers. It endeavours to ensure firms act in the best interest of the consumer and provide suitable financial advice and products. Within the wealth management industry Consumer duty entails a commitment to act in the best interests of clients and customers, ensuring their fair treatment and financial well-being. This involves transparent disclosure of services, fees, and risks, assessing individual client needs and risk tolerance for suitable recommendations, striving for optimal trade execution, diligent research, managing conflicts of interest, maintaining ongoing communication, safeguarding data privacy, and upholding ethical standards throughout all interactions. The focus is on delivering personalised, transparent, and prudent financial guidance to enhance clients' wealth management experience and outcomes.


What is cryptocurrency? Cryptocurrency is digital or virtual currencies that use cryptography for security and operate independently of a central authority, such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Ripple.

Customer Due Diligence (CDD)

What is customer due diligence? CDD (customer due diligence) is the process of verifying the identity of customers and assessing their potential risk as part of anti-money laundering (AML) procedures.

Customer Lifecycle Management (CLM)

What is customer lifecycle management or CLM? Customer lifecycle management software is also known as customer relationship management (CRM) although a CLM tool takes a much broader approach and includes KYP (know your prospect), KYC (know your customer) and AML (anti-money laundering) tools as well as the management of digital, omni-channel or hybrid client onboarding. Client lifecycle management (CLM) encompasses the end-to-end journey from initial prospecting and engagement, through to onboarding, ongoing client management and servicing, and finally offboarding and the transition of wealth.

Customer Relationship Management (CRM)

​​What is customer relationship management or CRM?   A customer relationship management (CRM) system is a software tool designed to help businesses manage and organise their interactions and relationships with customers.  CRM software provides a centralised database that allows businesses to collect, store, and manage customer information such as contact details, communication history, purchase history, preferences, and other relevant data. CRM systems can enable businesses to have a holistic view of their customers and their interactions across different channels depending on the vendor.  Client relationship management (CRM) software is also known as customer lifecycle management (CLM).

Data Management

What is data management?  Data management is the process of acquiring, organising, storing, and maintaining client data throughout its lifecycle. It involves activities aimed at ensuring data quality, integrity, security, accessibility, and usability for various purposes.

Digital Front End

What is a digital front end?  The digital front end is the customer-facing digital platform that allows individuals or businesses to interact with financial services digitally. This includes online portals, websites, mobile apps, and other digital channels.

Digital Onboarding

What is digital onboarding? Digital onboarding refers to the process of acquiring and verifying customer information electronically to create a new account or initiate a new relationship with a business or financial institution. It involves the use of digital platforms, tools, and technologies to streamline and automate the traditionally manual and paper-based onboarding processes.

Digital Transformation

What is a digital transformation? Digital transformation is the process of leveraging digital technologies to change and improve an organisation's operational efficiency, processes, products, or services.  A digital strategy involves adopting and integrating digital technologies, such as cloud computing, artificial intelligence, big data analytics, internet of things (IoT), and automation, to drive innovation, enhance efficiency, and deliver value to customers and stakeholders.

Digital Wallet

What is a digital wallet? A digital wallet is a software-based platform that allows users to store, manage, and make electronic transactions with various payment methods, including credit cards, debit cards, and cryptocurrencies.

Discretionary Services

What are discretionary services?  Discretionary services are an investment service where a professional or portfolio manager has the authority to make investment decisions on behalf of a client without requiring their explicit approval for each transaction.  In discretionary services, clients grant their investment advisor or portfolio manager the discretion to manage their investment portfolio and make investment decisions based on agreed-upon investment objectives, risk tolerance, and guidelines.

Discretionary Wealth Management

What is discretionary wealth management? Similar to discretionary services, discretionary wealth management refers to a service provided by financial professionals or wealth managers who have the authority to make investment decisions and manage a client's wealth on their behalf.  In discretionary wealth management, clients entrust their investment portfolio and financial decisions to a dedicated wealth manager who has the expertise and knowledge to make investment choices aligned with the client's financial goals and risk tolerance.

External Asset Manager

What is an external asset manager? An external asset manager (EAM) is a professional that provides independent investment and wealth management services to individuals or institutional clients. External asset managers are not affiliated with a specific financial institution (ie. wealth management firm or private bank) but operate as independent entities. They offer personalised investment advice, portfolio management, and financial planning services tailored to the unique needs and objectives of their clients.  These managers have expertise in various asset classes and investment vehicles and may have access to a wide range of financial products and services to diversify and optimise clients' portfolios. The primary focus of an external asset manager is to preserve and grow clients' wealth while providing objective and unbiased advice.

Family Office

What is a family office? A family office is an organisation which provides comprehensive wealth management and financial services to high net-worth families.

Financial Planning

What is financial planning? Financial planning is the process of evaluating a client's financial situation, goals, and risk tolerance to create a comprehensive plan for achieving financial objectives, including retirement planning, tax planning, estate planning, and more.

Financial Technology (FinTech)

What is FinTech? FinTech is the innovative use of technology to provide financial services and improve the efficiency of financial processes.

Front Office

What is the front office?  In the wealth management industry, front-office employees are typically those professionals that are client-facing and have a working relationship with clients on a daily basis. Typically, these are sales functions, advisors, relationship managers, private bankers, their support staff and personal assistants; as well as order and execution desks. Typically, wealth management firms refer to the teams responsible for supporting client management as front office, middle office, and back office.

General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

What is GDPR? GDPR is a regulation in the European Union that governs data protection and privacy for individuals within the EU and the export of personal data outside the EU

High-Net-Worth Client (HNW Client)

What is a high net worth (HNW) client? A HNW client is a client with substantial financial assets and high net worth. They are also referred to as high net worth individuals (HNWIs),

High-Net-Worth Individual (HNWI)

What is a high net worth individual (HNWI)? High-Net-Worth Individual (HNWI) is a person with a high level of financial assets, typically exceeding a specific threshold, such as $1 million in investable assets (excluding primary residence). They are also referred to as high net worth clients (HNWCs).

Hybrid Client Service

What is a hybrid client service?  Hybrid client service refers to a customer service approach that combines in-person interactions with digital or remote channels. Clients will receive a blend of face-to-face interactions and digital communication methods to provide customer support and assistance. It is also referred to as hybrid client servicing or hybrid client service model.

Hyper Personalisation

What is hyper-personalisation? Hyper-personalisation is a highly targeted and individualised approach to delivering personal client experiences and recommendations. It involves using advanced data analytics, artificial intelligence, and automation technologies to collect and analyse vast amounts of user data to create a tailored, in-depth experience.

Identity and Verification (ID&V)

What is ID&V? Identity and Verification is the process of gathering information to confirm who an individual is, and that the person is not being impersonated. Evidence to be gathered can include passports, identity cards and proof of residence. These can either be collected and seen physically during the onboarding process, or gathered using digital technology, for example using an app and ‘selfie-onboarding’.


What is InsurTech? InsurTech is technology-driven innovation in the insurance industry that aims to streamline processes, enhance customer experience, and develop new insurance products.

Intergenerational Wealth Transfer

What is intergenerational wealth transfer? Intergenerational wealth transfer refers to the process of passing assets, wealth, and financial resources from one generation to the next within a family. It typically involves the transfer of assets in the form of inheritance, estate planning, gifting, or trusts, typically from older family members, such as parents or grandparents, to their children or grandchildren.

Investment Advisory

What does investment advisory mean?  Investment Advisory is the provision of personalised investment advice to clients, based on their financial goals and risk profile.

Investment Management

What is investment management? Investment management is the management and supervision of client investments to achieve optimal returns in line with the client's financial objectives and risk profile.


What is KYC in wealth management?   KYC, also known as know your customer is a mandatory process put in place to ensure the identification and verification of a client’s identity occurs, prior to opening an account. This verification also occurs periodically whilst a client's account is open.


What is KYP in wealth management? KYP, also known as know your prospect is a mandatory process put in place to ensure that the identification and verification of a client’s identity occurs, prior to opening an account.

Lead Management

What is lead management? Lead management in financial services is the process of tracking and managing potential customers, or leads, from initial contact through conversion into clients.


What is liquidity? Liquidity is the ease with which an asset can be converted into cash without significantly affecting its price.

Machine Learning (ML)

What is machine learning? Machine learning is a subsection of artificial intelligence (AI) that focuses on machines learning from algorithms, allowing them to make predictions or decisions based on data without being programmed.

Managed Services

What are managed services? Managed services is the outsourcing of specific IT or business functions to a third-party service provider. These providers take responsibility for managing and maintaining the designated services and systems on behalf of the client organisation.

Marketing Automation

What is marketing automation? Marketing automation refers to software platforms and technology specifically designed to support the efficiency and effectiveness of marketing departments. It enables marketing activity to be undertaken on several channels such as email, social media, websites and automate repetitive tasks. It can also provide both channel and aggregated results to support the optimisation of the activity.

Markets in Financial Instruments Directive II (MiFID II)

What is MiFID II? MiFID II is a European Union (EU) regulation that governs financial markets, investment services, and trading activities to protect investors and enhance market transparency.

Mass Affluent Clients

What is a mass affluent client? Mass affluent clients are individuals who have accumulated significant investable wealth (Normally defined as over $250,000), but who are not yet HNW (High net worth) individuals.

Microsoft Dynamics

What is Microsoft Dynamics? Microsoft Dynamics is an integrated business management software solution that includes applications and modules designed to assist organisations in managing different aspects of their operations.

Middle Office

What is a middle office?  The middle office is the part of a wealth management firm or private bank that is responsible for various functions related to risk management, strategic management, commercial and compliance as well as IT management. Typically, wealth management firms refer to the teams responsible for supporting client management as front office, middle office and back office.

Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS)

What is the Monetary Authority of Singapore? The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) is the central bank and financial regulatory authority of Singapore, responsible for monetary policy and financial stability.

Net Worth

What does net worth mean? Net Worth is the difference between an individual's total assets (including investments, real estate, cash, etc) and total liabilities (debts and obligations).

Omni-Channel Servicing

What is omni-channel servicing? Omni-channel servicing is the provision of several communication channels via which the advisor and client can interact and includes both traditional channels (eg. face-to-face meetings, phone call, email etc.) with newer digital channels (such as real-time messaging, video, voice and real-time collaboration tools). This allows advisors to interact with their clients via their preferred channels from anywhere and at any time – exchanging information and documents all within a secure environment.   

Open API (also see API)

What is Open API? Open API refers to application programming standards that allow connections to be quickly built against standardised and public API definitions. Such API’s allow firms to more quickly integrate systems, and more cost effectively maintain these integrations, streamlining data flow and the user experience.

Open Banking

What is Open Banking? Open Banking is a system that allows customers to share their financial data securely with third-party providers, enabling better financial management and personalised services. See also open wealth.

Open Wealth

What is open wealth? Similar to open banking for personal bank accounts and savings, open wealth is a means to consolidate a client’s wealth into a single location, allowing customers to more easily share a much fuller and more accurate, up to date picture of their financial situation to wealth management firms providing them with wealth services.

PDPA (Personal Data Protection Act)

What is PDPA? PDPA (Personal Data Protection Act) is the data protection law in Singapore that governs the collection, use, and disclosure of personal data.

Perpetual KYC (Know Your Customer)

What is perpetual KYC? Perpetual KYC is the continuous process of verifying and updating customer information to ensure financial compliance with regulations and assessing the risk associated with each client.

Politically Exposed Person (PEP)

What is a PEP? PEP is a term used to describe individuals who hold prominent public positions or have connections to such positions. How financial institutions treat PEPs is vital; with extra scrutiny due to the risk of corruption and money laundering.

Portfolio Diversification

What is portfolio diversification? Portfolio Diversification is the spreading of investments across various assets or asset classes to reduce risk and increase the potential for returns.


What is PowerBI? PowerBI is Microsoft's business analytics service that provides interactive visualisations and business intelligence capabilities.

Private Banks

What are private banks?  Private banks are banks that cater specifically to high-net-worth (HNW) individuals, Ultra High Net worth (UHNW) individuals, families, and select businesses. Private banks offer a range of personalised banking and wealth management services which are tailored to the unique needs of their clients.

Product Lifecycle

What is the product life cycle? Product lifecycle is the systematic approach and set of processes employed to manage a product, system, or project throughout its entire lifecycle, from inception to retirement or end-of-life.

Professional Investor

What is a professional investor? A professional investor is one who meets certain wealth or income requirements of Hong Kong and can access more complex and risky financial products.

Prospect Management

What is prospect management?  Prospect management is the process of identifying, organising, and nurturing prospective clients with the goal of converting them into active and engaged customers. It involves managing prospects through the sales pipeline. Prospect managers will typically use a CRM platform that will help them to effectively track and manage their prospects in the hopes that they will convert later on down the line.


What is RegTech? RegTech is short for Regulatory Technology and refers to the use of technology to help financial institutions comply with regulatory requirements efficiently.

Regulated Sandbox

What is a regulated sandbox? Regulated sandbox is a controlled environment provided by regulatory authorities where FinTech companies can test their innovative products and services under supervision.

Regulatory Compliance

What is regulatory compliance? Regulatory compliance looks to ensure that a financial organisation operates in accordance with the laws, regulations, and standards set forth by relevant regulatory authorities or governing bodies.

Relationship Management (see Client Relationship Management)

What is relationship management? Relationship management is the building and maintaining of positive relationships with clients. Relationship management focuses on understanding and meeting the needs, expectations, and preferences of individuals or entities, while also aligning organisational goals and objectives.

Relationship Manager (RM)

What is a relationship manager (RM)?  A relationship manager is a professional who serves as a primary point of contact between a financial company and its clients. They serve as a bridge between the clients and various departments within the organisation, coordinating and facilitating communication and services. A Relationship Manager is sometimes referred to as an advisor, financial advisor (FA), wealth manager (WM) – or even an external asset manager (EAM) or financial intermediary manager (FIM).

Risk Appetite

What is risk appetite? Risk appetite is the process of assessing an investor's risk tolerance and preferences. The outcome of assessing a client’s risk appetite is their risk profile which is then used to tailor investment strategies accordingly.

Risk Assessment Tools

What are risk assessment tools? Risk assessment tools are software and algorithms that analyse data to assess and manage financial risks for individuals and businesses.

Risk Profiling

What is risk profiling? Risk profiling is the process of assessing an investor's risk tolerance and preferences to tailor investment strategies accordingly.

Risk Tolerance

What is risk tolerance? Risk Tolerance is the level of uncertainty or variability that an individual is willing to withstand in their investment portfolio.


What are robo-advisors? Robo-advisors are investment propositions that use algorithms and automated processes to provide limited investment advice and portfolio management services to individuals, with minimal human interaction. Such solutions are often used to service clients with lower investable assets, who might otherwise not be able to benefit from the services of a dedicated investment advisor.

Root Cause Analysis

What is root cause analysis? Root cause analysis focuses on identifying and acknowledging client concerns or grievances, investigating the root causes, and implementing corrective measures to resolve the issues. The aim is to restore client trust, satisfaction, and confidence in products, services, or processes.


What is SaaS? SaaS, or Software as a Service, is a cloud computing model where software applications are hosted and provided to users over the internet on a subscription basis.


What is scalability in wealth management? Scalability in wealth management systems is the ability of software or a system to handle increased workloads and grow efficiently without significant performance degradation.

Source of Wealth (SoW)

What is source of wealth?  Source of wealth (SoW) refers to the origin of a person's wealth or the legitimate sources from which their assets were acquired.

Suitability (Investment Suitability)

What is suitability in wealth management? Assessing suitability of a wealth management client is the requirement that investment recommendations or strategies provided to a client align with their financial goals, risk tolerance, and other relevant factors.

Swiss Data Protection Act (nFADP)

What is the Swiss Data Protection Act? The Swiss Data Protection Act (nFADP) is a data protection law that governs the processing of personal data in Switzerland and protects individuals' privacy rights.


What is a Trust in financial terms? A Trust in financial terms is a legal entity where assets are held by a trustee for the benefit of designated beneficiaries.

Ultra High Net-worth Client (UHNW Client)

What is a UHNW client? A UHNW client is one with extremely high levels of wealth and financial assets.

Vulnerable Client

What is a vulnerable client? A vulnerable client in relation to wealth management is described as being more susceptible to financial exploitation or having more difficulty making informed decisions regarding their finances, often requiring extra care and protection.

Wealth Management

What is wealth management? Wealth management is the professional service of providing comprehensive financial advice and investment management to high-net-worth individuals or affluent clients to help them achieve their financial goals and preserve and grow their wealth.


What is WealthTech? WealthTech, short for Wealth Technology, and is a subset of Fintech. It is the application of technology in wealth management, using digital platforms, software, and data-driven tools to enhance various aspects of wealth management. Generally, a wealth tech solution falls into one of two categories: 1, a solution that propagates the availability of wealth management services to wider social groups, and 2, solutions which harness digital to deliver traditional wealth management services more effectively.

XaaS (Anything as a Service)

What is XaaS? XaaS is a term that encompasses various cloud computing services, such as Software as a Service (SaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), and Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS).

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