Articles written by By Lisa Shidler


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How Fidelity used a robo-advice exemption to stick the landing as a fiduciary to 401(k) participants after the tumult of the DOL rule

The Boston king of DC plans had to withdraw from advising plan sponsors but followed a 12-year-old rule that permits a 'computer model' for the little guys

October 11, 2018 — 3:37 PM UTC

Twitter war pits Josh 'Downtown' Brown against Michael Kitces over hush-hush issue: Do RIA custodians face Merrill-Lynch style conflicts over advisor custody fees?

Brown criticizes Merrill Lynch for moving cash out of money market accounts into banks; Kitces says RIAs are complicit in something just as bad

August 29, 2018 — 1:49 AM UTC

AssetMark CEO Charles Goldman grabs $5.7B Global Financial out from under rival Envestnet's nose, gets ex-Curian CEO and solidifies his firm's own future in the brutal TAMP game; but don't call it a roll-up

At number two in TAMP ranks, the Concord, Calif.-based TAMP with $46 billion bought Global Financial, whose CEO headed Curian in its growth years and got out well before its death

August 25, 2018 — 1:52 AM UTC

Cresset cracks the family office market with a unique proposition; a suite of touchy-feely services that go beyond money management and help clients manage their lives

Cresset, guided by two savvy venture capitalists. is aiming to build the next-generation multi-family office on an independent, employee- and client-owned platform

August 15, 2018 — 4:42 PM UTC

Peter Mallouk has diamond as big as The Ritz, a flashy new Kansas City headquarters, complete with Silicon Valley perks; Now his new goal--top $40 billion in assets

'Everything's up to date in Kansas City, They gone about as fer as they can go;' Giant RIA, Creative Planning Inc., upgrades its Overland Park headquarters to set the stage for more explosive growth

August 9, 2018 — 5:47 PM UTC

LPL issues urgent warning to RIAs: The SEC wolf blew down its home-office door and is combing through records for evidence of mutual fund share class misuse

Andy Kalbaugh emailed a letter to LPL advisors that file their own ADVs as a sort of fair-warning heads up

July 25, 2018 — 10:37 PM UTC

Vanguard Group Makes Big Move on RIA Custody by Ending Commissions on 1,700 ETFs in Bid to Become Walmart of Financial Services

The Malvern, Pa.-based giant 'face slaps' Charles Schwab & Co. by undercutting it on ETF distribution fees the way Schwab did to it on ETF management fees

July 4, 2018 — 2:51 AM UTC

A Machiavellian Merrill Lynch took the lead on the DOL rule and marketed its fiduciary piety; now it's wrapping its flip-flop in the same pious intent

The fiduciary play by BoA's wirehouse got accolades but failed to help Merrill where it always matters most -- recruiting, retention and revenues. It still may be doing the right thing for consumers when reverse churning gets considered.

June 28, 2018 — 7:06 PM UTC

After tasting the 'nightmare' of FINRA confines, Roger Hewins buys back his $1.8B RIA from Midwestern CPAs -- with the new freedom worth leaving $3B of AUM behind

The $4.8-billion RIA mega-marriage of Hewins Financial and Wipfli in 2012 took 13 years to complete. The split in 2018 was more like lightning after brokerage regulators bellied up to the bar

June 4, 2018 — 4:51 PM UTC

Purchase of RIA in a Box with reclaimed Barnaby Grist as overseer shows ambition of New York buyer to create compliance 'robo-advisor'

Fresh off big AssetMark score, Aquiline's money talks, saying RIAs must spend big to comply but would like to spend smaller

June 1, 2018 — 3:01 PM UTC

A maverick RIA and a bank walked into a bar in 2006, 2011 and 2014. It's all settling out in a 2018 M&A & spin-off pub crawl

Boston Private lets a $9-billion RIA buy itself back to free up cash to be used to roll up more bank-minded wealth managers this time around and Peter Raimondi is back in the game

May 14, 2018 — 8:05 PM UTC

Why exactly Northwestern Mutual bought a digital darling for $250 million, shut it down, orphaned its customers and declared progress

When the Milwaukee-based mega-insurer relaunches in six months, the one aspect certainly subtracted from the mix will be the cash-draining 8,000 mass market customers

May 9, 2018 — 9:23 PM UTC

LPL Financial pulls pricing lever after Bill Hamm moves to yank $12 billion and 500 advisors off the IBD's line

The CEO of Independent Financial Partners will take 12 months move the asset trove to his own broker-dealer giving LPL time to woo reps looking for the door

May 3, 2018 — 10:01 PM UTC

Judge shows Howard Present no mercy then verbally shreds him after the F-Squared founder 'fails to understand the wrongfulness of having misrepresented the strategy'

U.S. District Judge Sorokin wants the public record to show -- in no uncertain terms -- that ex-CEO is a high risk to commit further violations

April 5, 2018 — 11:22 PM UTC

Merrill Edge eases Bank of America's transition to a post-wirehouse world

The Charlotte super bank's plan to add 600 branches builds on success but recruiters say lingering tension between Merrill and Merrill Edge advisors is more of a factor than the bank admits

April 3, 2018 — 8:32 PM UTC