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Articles published 4/2024


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Rob Farmer: I had agency in my blood.

Ex-PR chief of Schwab Advisor Services reappears at StreetCred while Schwab loses a corporate PR head and gains a new one to 'protect the brand' after a rough 2023

Rob Farmer joins Jimmy Moock, Emma Smith, Will Ruben and Jason Lahita at StreetCred; Andrew Wyse, an ex-Pepsi PR honcho, joins Schwab after Joe Carberry departure in January.

April 20, 2024 at 2:54 AM

Alyssa Thornton: [There's] room to grow if needed.

With technology still its Achilles heel, Vanguard makes Charlotte, N.C., a 'hub' for software engineers, purchasing 700,000-square-foot campus to house 2,400 with 'room to grow'

The $117 million purchase in exurbia may finally resolve one of Vanguard's biggest shortfalls -- lagging tech from the boombox and cassette tape era.

April 19, 2024 at 2:01 AM

Schwab let staff attrition and position eliminations contribute to its notable reduction in staff size.

Charles Schwab Corp. headcount is down 4,000 from its June 30 peak, nearly double the expected 'reductions,' though the company has hundreds of job openings, many with 'wealth' in the titles

The $9-trillion financial firm disclosed an updated total of 32,600 staff, which is a hair above the 2021 first quarter total, but down 9.4% from 12 months ago.

April 18, 2024 at 3:48 AM

Bill Crager left Envestnet without a permanent CEO on board. .

Envestnet's shares soar on Reuters report about 'receiving interest' for takeover, the latest in a line of reported attempts

The Berwyn, Pa., firm, dogged by activist investors and minority shareholder, BlackRock, is getting more active.

April 16, 2024 at 7:22 PM

Walter Bettinger: Right when things often seem the darkest, they tend to turn around and begin to appear brighter.

A buoyant Schwab CEO Walter Bettinger declares 'darkest' days past for Schwab as in-house RIA asset quarterly inflows surge 60%, but analyst's 'free-cash' question raises his ire

The Charles Schwab Corp. results boomed and shares spiked as legacy TD Ameritrade branch brokers deliver on driving brokerage assets into fee-based Schwab RIA products; net new assets supassed $100 billion

April 16, 2024 at 1:38 AM

Craig Siegenthaler: When [can] BlackRock get back to 5% base organic growth?

BlackRock invokes Envestnet's fresh promise in pushing iShares by model portfolios on earnings call where merciless analysts pepper its execs with questions about sub-5% organic asset growth

Assets soared to $10.5 trillion and earnings per share beat their bogey, but the New York City money manager just keeps sinking because growth relies too much on market gains.

April 13, 2024 at 2:06 AM

Ted Pick: “$10 trillion is coming. We're going to get there.”

James Gorman pivoted to 'wealth management' to save Morgan Stanley after the 2008 financial crisis, but now feds are looking into the unit's rapid growth to $6T in AUA, amid allegations of lax oversight and money laundering

Gorman bailed on the firm, Jan. 1, leaving successor Ted Pick to pick up the pieces; Wall Street wasted no time dumping the stock after a WSJ report that a Federal Reserve probe had metasticized to other agencies

April 12, 2024 at 1:47 AM

Megan Carpenter: Firms that have custody with national brands have implied trust with those brands.

Low profile RIAs keep draining market share from non-RIA national brands -- Morgan Stanley, Merrill Lynch, UBS -- but big names still have a marketing edge, new Cerulli report says

The largest Cerulli study sub-group, 39% of individuals, want 'large national' brands -- even with RIAs set to gain four percentage points of market share on wirehouses by 2027

April 11, 2024 at 4:27 AM

Ron Carson: I realize that to continue to be a growth leader in the RIA space, we must adopt a bifocal ability.
April 10, 2024 at 2:54 AM

Jason Wenk: Imagine if you took Schwab and Fidelity ... [fees], and then made them even better.

RIAs assailed Altruist and put Jason Wenk on defense over a new fee schedule, but-- four days later -- Wenk went back on offense, promising to better even unchallenged fees

Multiple RIAs expressed outrage over "X" before the Altruist CEO superseded his critics and committed to having the lowest price mutual fund platform in the market.

April 9, 2024 at 9:02 PM

Jack Ginter: The overwhelming majority went through an RFP or RFP-like [request for proposal] process

An Abbot Downing breakaway, but not exactly, Callan Family Office hits $5 billion of AUM after just two years using a creative 'Callan' brand deal and a partnership model

In the wake Wells Fargo's 'Abbot Downing' brand kill-off, Jack Ginter struck a platinum brand deal of his own, took his UHNW act to an RIA, and scored explosive 'organic' growth

April 9, 2024 at 2:00 AM

Michael Kitces [left] (with Alan Moore): “As it turns out, the next generation of clients is actually the most willing to pay for professional financial advice.

XY Planning Network founders mark 10th birthday of their Montana-based RIA-making machine with hard growth numbers and not-so-soft chiding of robo-advisors, CFP limitations and doubters of their downmarket business model

Alan Moore and Michael Kitces put their money where their mouths were and plan to expand their not-a-CFP XYPN Academy training to stamp out 'Imposter Syndrome.'

April 6, 2024 at 2:02 AM

Olivia Eisinger: it's about time that the industry wakes up and embraces the massive opportunity driven by the demand for quality financial advice in front of us.

Olivia Eisinger convinced Apex to hire dozens of her fellow ex-TDA staff to 'reimagine' VEO and the service and now it's an RIA custody deliverable with a Big-Four-or-bust mandate -- and some analyst doubts

Now head of RIA custody leading loyal people like George Tamer, she re-platooned, Eisinger doesn't plan to compete much with Altruist because Apex plans to go straight after bigger RIAs, not startups -- perhaps with foot-in-the-door beginnings to prove itself.

April 5, 2024 at 1:48 AM

Stephen Chen: Everyone else builds software for the advisor first.

Stephen Chen completes $20 million raise; RIAs have found a niche use for his consumer-facing software -- never mind all those subscribers and enterprises

The founder of NewRetirement.com has a DIY approach that RIAs and enterprises are attracted to because consumers do much of the work

April 3, 2024 at 2:43 AM

Christa Carone: It’s an honor... to help build momentum for the brand.

Christa Carone, an ex-Fidelity and Xerox marketing whiz, steps onto a slippery slope at LPL with a daunting task -- to consolidate a NASCAR size brand portfolio... or not?

With no CMO since August, the chief marketing officer will play catch up for a company still hungry to buy more branded B2B and B2C players.

April 2, 2024 at 1:28 AM

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