Archive for January, 2015

AK In The News: For Advisors, Regional B/Ds Are The Goldilocks Model

Friday, January 30th, 2015

I was asked to write an opinion piece for Financial Advisor IQ (A Financial Times Service) on the relative merits of regional broker/dealers versus the competition – larger B/Ds as well as the independent or quasi-independents. Contact me if you would like a copy of the entire piece.

To summarize though, overall. regional B/Ds have done quite well since the financial crisis, helped by cheaper technology which has allowed them to compete with fewer resources.

To quote from the piece: “Key ways in which regional brokerages are positioning themselves as a happy medium between the wirehouse and RIA models include:

  • Access. Advisors who are large or even moderately large producers will probably have the ear of the decision-makers in the home office. They will be more important to these people than if they were large producers at a wirehouse or at an RIA using Charles Schwab’s or Fidelity’s investment platforms. They will have access to people when they need them and be on a first-name basis with key executives. They’ll also have better access to support staff. And advisors with friends in the back often receive service that has a personal touch.
  • Influence. As a result of their access, advisors can influence product and platform decisions. For example, large producers will likely be invited to serve on an advisory council, where their opinions will count more than those of their peers.
  • Freedom. Regional brokerages generally have fewer proprietary products than their larger counterparts do. Therefore, advisors are under less pressure to offer in-house products to clients, who often perceive a conflict of interest in such sales. This independence appeals to advisors attracted to the objectivity and fiduciary status associated with RIAs. Additionally, regional brokerages are not associated with banks, which reduces the pressure to cross-sell bank products.”

1Q15 Newsletter – Protecting Clients From Themselves – Is Now Available!

Wednesday, January 7th, 2015

Our first quarter Unlocking Real Value newsletter is now available!

The bull market in stocks continued its impressive run almost unabated last year, surprising many market pundits, while the economy showed relatively good strength. Weakness in the economies of the rest of the world, however, along with geopolitical uncertainty in Russia and the Middle East are warning signs for 2015.

Volatility has already begun to increase, and the year is off to a shaky start in the markets. The problem is not the volatility itself, but how people react to it. Many investors use volatility as an excuse to exit the market. The problem, however, is they have no clear plan on how or when to re-enter.

We have updated one of our most popular White Papers – Protecting Clients From Themselves. This is a great piece to show clients to keep them calm and invested as volatility increases.

Click here to see the newsletter. Click here to download the White Paper.

Please let us know if you have any questions. Have a great quarter!