After an autumn of discontent, Financial Planning's Retirement Advisor Confidence Index - a monthly barometer of business conditions for wealth managers - has surged in the new year, with sharp rebounds in risk tolerance and equity investments.

The index, based on a Financial Planning survey of planning professionals, registered 57.5 for February and (due to an adjustment to make the index more current) a revised 56.1 for January, after several months hovering between 48 and 53. RACI readings below 50 show a decline relative to the prior month; numbers above 50 indicate expansion.

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