The world’s largest international wealth management firms weathered 2011 more successfully than the smaller ones, according to Scorpio Partnership’s annual Private Banking Benchmark study.

Upper-tier wealth management firms — those with assets under management greater than $20 billion — performed better than lower-tier firms on many fronts, including net new money, assets under management, income and pre-tax profit growth. But they also incurred higher expenses linked to their expansions into new markets and increasing global regulation, the study found.

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