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Articles written by Lisa Shidler


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Walt Bettinger: We think we'll unearth all sorts of relationships.

Charles Schwab Corp. boasts 99.9% success with (likely) mock conversion of TD Ameritrade data to its own systems on eve of going live, and a hidden bonus -- $500 billion in held-away TDA assets ripe for the picking

First 500,000 TDA accounts will convert to Schwab this month with the promise of little to no repapering, but Schwab braces, nonetheless, for Murphy's Law.

February 2, 2023 at 3:04 AM

Bernie Clark (screenshot from today's winter update): Why would Envestnet think they want to be in the custody business?

In rare form, Schwab's Bernie Clark calls out rivals -- not least Fidelity, Goldman Sachs and LPL -- by name and warns them about challenging Schwab's prohibitive custody business domination

The head of RIA custody says 85% of RIA firms work with his unit, but rival custodians have knives drawn to poach advisors when TD Ameritrade merger wraps.

January 28, 2023 at 2:50 AM

Ron Carson: At Carson, this all points to becoming a single source of truth for our clients.

With AUM growth stalled since Bain bought $290-million stake in 2021, Carson Wealth is seeking greener 401(k) pastures by choosing Vestwell's 'dirt cheap' fees

The Omaha, Neb., RIA slid below $19 billion by end of 2022 but has a deal with Vestwell to encourage its RIAs to seek 401(k) plans

January 18, 2023 at 3:33 AM

Tony Leal felt the time was right to transition from the company.

Bill Crager shuffles the deck on management team created just seven months ago: Tony Leal is out of 'Big Three' inner circle, replaced by Morgan Stanley vet Rose Palazzo

The RIA software 'trailblazer' and co-founder of MoneyGuidePro has been working on departure for a year; will transition to a 'consultant,' company says

January 7, 2023 at 1:50 AM

Patrick Church: 'They put me in the ‘screw him’ category.'

Schwab Advisor Services fired TD Ameritrade RIA as client after its owner charged a 5% fee on his wife's account, but what it did afterward enraged him

The Westlake, Texas RIA custodian followed up by writing a letter to clients raising 'billing practices' as a concern for something regulators often forgive, experts say.

December 14, 2022 at 2:12 AM

Jason Roberts: There were lessons learned during the last rulemaking that may expedite some of the drafting and/or avoiding.

The Labor Dept. will publish the proposed 'Biden' DOL Fiduciary Rule (likely) next week, it says, but today it de-fanged the Trump ESG prohibitions

Two years after President Biden took office, the federal agency is ready to unleash a centrist DOL rule that eviscerates Trump's influence but stops short of Obama's stringent proposal.

November 23, 2022 at 2:15 AM

Brian Hamburger: SEC would now have the ability to search for all advisers that used that service provider and look for similar problems.

SEC crackdown on 'set-and-forget' advice alarms RIAs, who face new 'burdensome' and 'expensive' reporting to curb alleged 'conflicts of interest' over 'deceptive' outsourcing

The spike in RIAs outsourcing functions formerly kept in-house triggered the crackdown, but is the red tape worth it? advisors ask

November 15, 2022 at 3:59 AM

Bruce Miller: We want to acquire a large OSJ and with what it costs to borrow money now is very expensive

LPL Financial prepares to enter the 'OSJ' channel -- this time as an owner, headed by a former executive whose staff advises $40-billion

The Fort Mill, S.C.-based IBD may thread the needle with the OSJ purchase, though it will compete with other OSJs it serves

November 9, 2022 at 1:11 AM

Christopher Walters remains after activist investors convinced him they knew better.

After major activist arm-twisting, Blucora cashes out of software holding to double down on legacy H.D. Vest broker-dealer unit it bought seven years ago

The $73 billion AUM Dallas firm now has $720 million in cash to pay off debt and put toward turning the old Roger Ochs franchise into a world class wealth manager.

November 4, 2022 at 2:47 AM

Brad Genser: 'Advisors are also able to build a three times bigger book.'

Farther struts its startup magic and shows why a $375-million RIA can be worth $50 million -- by getting four advisors to bring books of business just to be part of the enterprise

The San Francisco firm claimed its software was at another level and now advisors are betting careers on it, though not of the UHNW variety imagined

November 2, 2022 at 3:27 AM

Chip Roame: Difficulty in assimilating if, it ever comes, would be the reason to slow down hiring.

Fidelity Investments' plan to hire 12,000 by October hit wall of macro-headwinds; no problem, it landed at 15,000; Schwab keeps hiring, too

The Boston giant's people grab could be derailed by indigestion -- the inability to assimilate staff -- an analyst says; but it has yet to materialize so the hiring spree rolls on.

October 29, 2022 at 12:02 AM

Walt Bettinger:  [Exiting Russia] was the right thing to do.

Schwab shares surge 6% after it hardens TD Ameritrade merger date and affirms its $1.8-billion-plus in synergies, though it got burned by having engineers in the wrong place at the wrong time

The $8-trillion Texas firm had to rewire TDA's signature 'thinkorswim' software after learning engineers were based in heavily sanctioned Russia

October 27, 2022 at 10:23 PM

Dave Welling: All of our 'platform' teams will report to Daniel.

Dave Welling's rollup hits $39 billion of AUM and hires a 37- year-old breakaway from BlackRock to turn internal five-click shopping into a 'single conversation'

The Mercer Advisors CEO in Denver now has a 'president' reporting to him from the Big Apple to take on the specific mission of wiring a national RIA, rather than day-to-day operations at a rollup.

October 21, 2022 at 5:48 PM

Bob Veres:  As a former editor of a professional magazine in this space, that is a breach of the wall between sales and editorial.

Investment Advisor is seeking legal advice after Bob Veres called out IA's new 'Luminaries' awards for alleged sales, editorial conflicts

Sales and editorial staff at ALM, publisher of IA and ThinkAdvisor, counter that awardees are under no obligation to buy anything, but many often do.

October 11, 2022 at 7:05 PM

Dan Bernstein: This does impact everyone from the largest institution to a two-person shop.

After catching Wall Street red-handed, the SEC is 'coming after' RIAs that fail to track client chats by text, WhatsApp and social media, experts say

The regulator's $1.1 billion in wirehouse fines is a warning to RIAs that not keeping proper records of online chats could paint a bulls eye on their backs as well.

October 4, 2022 at 1:41 AM

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