Key takeaways

  • Rising interest rates, high inflation and market volatility mean it’s more important than ever to have a family wealth-preservation strategy.

  • Wealth preservation strategies include having a financial plan, an emergency fund, investment diversification and insurance.

You’ve worked hard to build your net worth, so protecting your wealth is always top of mind. In today’s economy, however, it may feel especially challenging. With interest rates rising amid unpredictable markets and overall economic uncertainty, it’s more important than ever to have a comprehensive financial strategy in place.

“Volatility in the markets and in the world is driving people to seek havens,” says Russell St. John, Wealth Management Advisor for U.S. Bancorp Investments. Protecting your wealth requires a combination of strategies. Working together, these six strategies – including a well-funded savings account, diversified investment portfolio and insurance – may help preserve your wealth in a challenging economic environment.


1. Create a financial plan to protect family wealth

It all starts with a plan. An experienced financial professional can work with you to identify your goals and recommend actions to help you work toward reaching them.

“My job is to get to know where my clients stand financially today and where they want to be in the future,” says St. John. “They may say, ‘I have to pay my bills today, but my wish is to buy a house on a lake or leave assets to my favorite charity.’ The intersection of those two things is the basis for a plan.”

If you already have a financial plan in place, take time to review it. It’s important to evolve your plan as your life changes and as you age. When you’re young, you've got lots of time and don't have to worry as much about volatility, says St. John. But as you get closer to retirement, your assets require greater protection.


2. Save for emergencies or large purchases to protect family wealth

Having money that’s earmarked for emergencies or future spending can help you better manage both unplanned events and your day-to-day cash flow. Financial professionals often recommend having three to six months of living expenses on hand in a savings account, so you aren’t forced to prematurely withdraw money from a retirement account or certificate of deposit (CD).

“There are risks you can control and risks you can't,” says St. John. “We can adjust your portfolio based on your risk tolerance, but we can't control your furnace dying or a large out-of-pocket medical expense.”


3. Diversify your investment portfolio to preserve wealth

Having tools in your portfolio that “zig” while others “zag” can help minimize the impact of market volatility. Diversification means not putting all your money into investments with the same risk class, and it can work on several different planes, says St. John.

“Within bonds, for example, you can diversify across types of bonds or industries,” he says. “You might buy some from the financial industry, some in technology and some industrial. If one sector of the economy weakens, not all your investments will be subject to that particular weakness.”

Diversification also protects against concentration risk. For example, having half of your investments in your company’s stock can put your retirement money in jeopardy if the stock drops.

“Financial planning is holistic in nature. Part of it is investment management, but it also involves working with your tax professionals and your legal professionals and making sure that everything ties together.”

Russell St. John, Wealth Management Advisor for U.S. Bancorp Investments

4. Invest in insurance to protect family wealth

Annuities as well as life, disability and long-term care insurance can help protect your assets from unexpected changes to your family, career and health.

“People traditionally think about insurance as a way to protect your family, and that’s more applicable when you're young and term life insurance is inexpensive,” St. John says. “As your assets and your family grow, permanent life insurance is a good diversification play.”

For example, some life insurance products can also be used for long-term care. “If you need the money during retirement, you can the cash value for that,” says St. John. “If you pass away, your family is protected. And if you end up needing a long-term care support, your family doesn't have to worry about paying for it because you've got a plan.”


5. Be tax smart to preserve wealth

Thoughtful planning, from a tax diversified investment portfolio to a charitable giving strategy, may help you reduce your tax liability.

“Financial planning is holistic in nature,” says St. John. “Part of it is investment management, but it also involves working with your tax and legal professionals to make sure that everything ties together.”

St. John works with clients to design investment portfolios with tax sensitivity in mind. For example, annuities can be a good tool, as they can grow tax deferred. Other opportunities for tax savings include Roth IRA conversions, which allow you to convert a traditional tax-deferred IRA into a Roth IRA, paying the taxes today while rates are low.

“When you put money into a Roth IRA, you won’t pay taxes on it again and you won’t be subject to required minimum distributions in retirement,” says St. John.


6. Have an estate plan to leave a legacy and protect family wealth

A will, a trust and other estate planning documents can help safeguard your wealth for your family and the causes you care about. For families who have a small number of assets, a will might be fine. But if your family has more complex needs, or you have a business or investment property, it's important to work with an estate planning attorney.

“If your estate plan isn't clearly defined, your assets could end up in probate and the courts might decide where they go,” says St. John. “Estate planning can also help on taxation and transfer of assets.”

Wealth preservation strategies such as the six outlined are best handled with an experienced team of wealth specialists. Learn how we can help you protect the money you’ve worked hard to earn.

Related articles

Financial stress: How to identify and manage it

There are plenty of reasons to feel anxious about money—but there are also plenty of ways to ease financial stress. Here are five ways you can take control of your money worries.

Why is insurance important in financial planning?

Just like your financial goals, insurance policies are as unique as you are.


Start of disclosure content

Investment and insurance products and services including annuities are:
Not a deposit • Not FDIC insured • May lose value • Not bank guaranteed • Not insured by any federal government agency.

U.S. Wealth Management – U.S. Bank | U.S. Bancorp Investments is the marketing logo for U.S. Bank and its affiliate U.S. Bancorp Investments.

Start of disclosure content

U.S. Bank, U.S. Bancorp Investments and their representatives do not provide tax or legal advice. Each individual's tax and financial situation is unique. You should consult your tax and/or legal advisor for advice and information concerning your particular situation.

The information provided represents the opinion of U.S. Bank and U.S. Bancorp Investments and is not intended to be a forecast of future events or guarantee of future results. It is not intended to provide specific investment advice and should not be construed as an offering of securities or recommendation to invest. Not for use as a primary basis of investment decisions. Not to be construed to meet the needs of any particular investor. Not a representation or solicitation or an offer to sell/buy any security. Investors should consult with their investment professional for advice concerning their particular situation.

Start of disclosure content

For U.S. Bank:

Equal Housing Lender. Deposit products are offered by U.S. Bank National Association. Member FDIC. Mortgage, Home Equity and Credit products are offered by U.S. Bank National Association. Loan approval is subject to credit approval and program guidelines. Not all loan programs are available in all states for all loan amounts. Interest rates and program terms are subject to change without notice.

U.S. Bank is not responsible for and does not guarantee the products, services or performance of U.S. Bancorp Investments, Inc.

U.S. Bank does not offer insurance products. Insurance products are available through our affiliate U.S. Bancorp Investments.

Start of disclosure content

For U.S. Bancorp Investments:

Investment and insurance products and services including annuities are available through U.S. Bancorp Investments, the marketing name for U.S. Bancorp Investments, Inc., member FINRA and SIPC, an investment adviser and a brokerage subsidiary of U.S. Bancorp and affiliate of U.S. Bank.

U.S. Bancorp Investments is registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission as both a broker-dealer and an investment adviser. To understand how brokerage and investment advisory services and fees differ, the Client Relationship Summary and Regulation Best Interest Disclosure are available for you to review.

Insurance products are available through various affiliated non-bank insurance agencies, which are U.S. Bancorp subsidiaries. Products may not be available in all states. CA Insurance License #0E24641.

Pursuant to the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, U.S. Bancorp Investments must provide clients with certain financial information. The U.S. Bancorp Investments Statement of Financial Condition is available for you to review, print and download.

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) Rule 2267 provides for BrokerCheck to allow investors to learn about the professional background, business practices, and conduct of FINRA member firms or their brokers. To request such information, contact FINRA toll-free at 1-800‐289‐9999 or via An investor brochure describing BrokerCheck is also available through FINRA.

U.S. Bancorp Investments Order Processing Information.

Municipal Securities Education and Protection– U.S. Bancorp Investments is registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board (MSRB). An investor brochure that describes the protections that may be provided to you by the MSRB rules and how to file a complaint with an appropriate regulatory authority is available to you on the MSRB website at