Today’s investors share common goals,
whether they’re investing on behalf of a family, an endowment, or a corporate retirement plan.

These goals—and the challenges facing plan sponsors, consultants, and investment professionals—have reshaped our principles of asset management.

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Build for successful outcomes

It’s about more than beating a benchmark.

Our approach requires an understanding of what drives returns, mitigates risk, and influences cost in order to build for successful outcomes.

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Our work with clients focuses on their main objectives: growing assets, generating income, or preserving wealth. We build investment strategies to manage to these outcomes, individually or collectively. That requires a deep understanding of return drivers and how to target and diversify them.”

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Nicolaas Marais
Co-CEO, Wells Fargo Asset Management

Successful outcomes depend on a precise combination of elements

Investors have different investment objectives, based on their financial goals. We aim to help investors achieve their investment objectives by focusing on outcomes, such as growing assets, preserving wealth, or generating income.

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Investment expertise Disciplined portfolio process Organizational culture Outcomes Generate income Grow assets Preserve wealth

Helping investors succeed requires high levels of expertise from all investment professionals.

Following these best practices ensures a disciplined and efficient portfolio construction process to reduce the possibility of unintended consequences.

Helping investors achieve their investment objectives depends upon an organizational culture that rewards initiative and expects autonomy with responsibility.

Focusing these strengths in pursuit of investor needs is what can drive successful outcomes.

5 insights for
building successful outcomes

Defend portfolios against uncertainty

Risk is personal. So is the right approach to defend against it.

The framework for risk management must be closely connected to a planned outcome, so that risk exposure reflects the investor’s goals.

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Identifying and analyzing intended and unintended investment risk is crucial to achieving outcomes for clients. Our multidimensional risk process covers many factors, including industries, countries, and interest rate environments.”

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John Hockers
Co-Head of Portfolio Risk Management and Analytics

4 strategies that may
help defend against uncertainty


Risk management is about finding a balance that is most likely to lead to a successful outcome. That looks very different for an investor seeking to grow assets and another seeking to preserve wealth.


A portfolio that minimizes downside risk will likely sacrifice upside return potential. The optimal trade-off depends on the manager’s market insights and the investor’s goals.


A comprehensive investment risk management process makes both intended and unintended risks transparent to portfolio managers and senior management and, ultimately, to investors.


When markets are stressed, correlations between assets typically increase while liquidity risk and other forms of market risk spike.

Create long-term financial well-being

True prosperity is about a higher level of satisfaction.

For today’s investors, long-term sustainability is about creating a higher level of satisfaction and having an impact, financially and purposefully.

Image of husband and wife representing long-term financial well-being.

I’m often asked what sustainability has to do with investing. I think it’s really the basis for ensuring long-term successful outcomes—whether that means investing in companies that generate strong returns along with a positive impact, or ensuring an employee’s retirement security, or preserving a family’s wealth across generations.”

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Fredrik Axsater
Head of Strategic Business Segments

What investors say about
long-term financial well-being

Financial security, defined by today’s investors

of nonretired investors in the U.S. are looking for an additional guaranteed income stream beyond Social Security

are willing to give up access to some of their savings for guaranteed income

also want flexibility in spending their savings, even if it means they might outlive savings

Investment purpose, defined by today’s investors

of surveyed investors expressed interest in protecting the environment, including fighting climate change and supporting innovations in energy, pollution, and waste management

of surveyed investors expressed interest in doing social good, such as promoting diversity and inclusion, improving education, and protecting human rights

of surveyed investors expressed interest in responsible corporate governance, including ethics and other behaviors

Source: Wells Fargo and Gallup poll, Q4 2017

2 key considerations for
long-term financial well-being

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