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Articles published 11/2013


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Steve Huxley: Today, over 4,000 bond funds exist, meaning 97% of all bond fund managers have been enjoying an environment of terrific total returns buoyed by falling rates over the past 30 years.

How interest rates have rolled since the first Thanksgiving and why the 'new normal' under Yellen seems destined to last

The Pilgrims probably paid 12-18% to finance their new lives (lucky for us they took the risk)

November 28, 2013 – 4:53 AM

Scott Leonard, wife Mandi and sons Luke 7, Jake, 11, and Griffin, 13: The business has no purpose other than to satisfy my personal goals. If my personal need was to go sailing, then I consider the trip a net gain.

Where Scott Leonard's life stands after serving his RIA clients mostly from sea for 2 1/2 years, what cut his trip short and what was most unexpected

The odyssey took a $200-million-in-AUM toll in addition to a partner split and Leonard, 45, still faces, psychologically, the task of building a business from 'scratch'

November 27, 2013 – 6:09 AM

Stuart DePina: They wanted to find a reach into the RIA channel and they placed their bet on Tamarac to make that happen.

Envestnet struts upmarket stuff by signing a $1.5-billion, a $3.3-billion, a $2.3-billion and a $4-billion RIA to big technology deals

Post-Tamarac acquisition and bolstering, the Chicago-based king of SMAs to IBDs poached accounts from the likes of The Colony Group, Henssler Financial, Laird Norton, RegentAtlantic from legacy RIA providers

November 25, 2013 – 9:13 PM

Rajeev Sharan: I function as a market ‘shock absorber’ for clients.

Two 'super RIAs' -- Aspiriant and Salient -- hire risk officers in a sign of what clients value post-2008-'09, post-Madoff

In the post-Madoff era, explicit downside is becoming more important -- and lets Aspiriant justify its $7,500 planning fee better

November 24, 2013 – 8:45 PM

Jon Stein: There are situations where technology -- algorithms may be a better way of saying it—are more effective that a human advisor would be.

Betterment's Jon Stein talks human-RIA coopetition but breathes fire about fellow online RIAs

The 34 year-old CEO sees 300-fold growth to $100 billion, partially fueled by classic RIAs, and not much competition from Wealthfront and the like

November 22, 2013 – 6:29 PM

Christopher Van Slyke: From day one (in 2007), when we merged, he told me he was going to go sailing.

Scott Leonard's 2-1/2-year boat odyssey around the world is followed by split with his partner

Christopher Van Slyke realized Trovena was presented with fast-arising opportunities he couldn't pursue with Leonard at sea

November 22, 2013 – 5:47 PM

Franklin Tsung (with Tim Welsh to his right and Andy Wang to his left) : This puts the direct purchase option out of reach for the average advisor.

Salesforce rolls out giant product, pricing changes -- a virtual doubling for the direct-sold version that could price out some mainstream RIA practices

As part of a big revamping, Salesforce founder and CEO Marc Benioff will make CRM work on mobile but it may now cost twice as much for the comparable direct-sold product

November 21, 2013 – 3:38 AM

Tom Livergood: Everyone is grappling with the issue.

Why a disconnect between reporting software and advisors to UHNW assets persists -- and what makes the problem so thorny

Many big-time wealth managers are plagued by their own foibles, their clients' peculiar challenges and third-parties who haven't quite gotten a handle on the challenges

November 19, 2013 – 8:05 PM

Chris Romano: We don't even consider trading away at Fidelity because of the high ticket trade away fee.

RIA custodians charge steep new ETF-related fees that can range into the tens of thousands of dollars for big trades and advisors are working to deal with them

Schwab, Fido, TD and Pershing are all in on these 'trade-away' fees and claim they simply are defraying costs of manual labor -- but RIAs aren't so sure

November 18, 2013 – 10:35 PM

Adri Miller-Heckman:  It's hard to find a woman who got into it who says: I got into this to make a shit load of money.

Long the underdogs, female advisors are actually winning in two important categories, a study based on $3.5 trillion of AUM shows

Trust is where women -- especially with their own gender -- gain the upper hand, the PriceMetrix study concludes

November 18, 2013 – 1:00 PM

Waltham is in the Boston wealth belt -- close enough to the Hub but far enough away to spread out in a glassy building.

A $1.2-billion RIA is born on the Rt. 128 altar as two $600-million-AUM firms -- one in hyper-growth mode by Fidelity referrals -- get hitched

Spawned from an away breakfast, the deal of Argent Wealth Management and Pillar Financial Advisors financed a succession, forestalled death on the vine and set the stage for accelerated growth

November 15, 2013 – 8:25 PM

Adam Bold: What if the casual observer isn't able to discern what one franchisee does versus another.

Alleging gambling habits, SEC concerns and steady AUM declines, The Mutual Fund Store is offering $5.5 million to Jeff Roper to sell and walk away

What Adam Bold wants, he says, is to force a settlement to keep the reputational fire from spreading out of control

November 14, 2013 – 8:39 PM

Departed Schwab retail advisors protested the firm's termination policies on the first day of IMPACT.

Schwab IMPACT 2013 is another great bash but picketers and Fidelity siphoned off some precious RIA attention

Attendees were greeted by disgruntled ex-Schwab advisors chanting 'Find out how Schwab terminates' and Fidelity's RIA campaign jumped out at you on every sidewalk

November 14, 2013 – 6:32 AM

Jonathan Blau: We never knew there was a way to partner with someone like Dynasty.

Dynasty Financial leads a second $1 billion-range team -- now Fidelity RIA -- out of Wall Street in as many weeks

Fusion Family Wealth LLC presumed the economics of buying top research wasn't there -- but was shown otherwise

November 13, 2013 – 7:07 PM

Mary Jo White: Anytime you've got the same conduct regulated differently you need to take a close look and see what you should do.

After starring in New Yorker article, Mary Jo White holds SIFMA event spellbound and 'no-admit, no-deny' is still in play

The muscular prosecutor of security fraud and terrorism cases delivered roses -- and maybe some thorns

November 13, 2013 – 5:03 PM

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