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Articles Published August 2011


The herd of advisors has been culled but the ones remaining may be better ones.

Rough markets cull the advisory herd but in a healthy way, new Cerulli data shows
RIAs grow in numbers and strength

Wednesday 8.31.11
Erika Cramer: Carlyle met their criteria in every aspect.

The Carlyle Group gets a bigger testing paw into RIA waters
The giant private equity firm is putting capital toward an aggressive expansion of the $4 billion Avalon Advisors

Tuesday 8.30.11
Alex Murguia: We needed hit-by-a-bus insurance.

How McLean Asset Management is adding practices without making acquisitions
The New Hampshire and Virginia practice is bringing smaller RIAs in under its wing

Monday 8.29.11
Jerry Murphy is taking the FSC helm.

Four news items for RIAs
Banks buy RIAs again; UHNW go nuts for iPads; the CFP Board gets much tougher; a big IBD gets a new president

Friday 8.26.11
Brent Burns: I don't think I have ever seen conventional wisdom about an investment be so far off from reality.

Should RIAs buy gold now as a hedge?
When the US went off the gold standard in 1971, things changed

Friday 8.26.11
Jason Lahita: Trying to somehow gloss over this or claim it was justified would pour gas on the fire - take your lumps for an honest mistake and move forward.

Schwab's rapid response to letter snafu seems to be smoothing ruffled feathers
The custodian garnered praise for its straightforward apology, but does the blunder point up a larger conflict of interest?

Thursday 8.25.11
Harold Evensky: They want to be in a position to raise money from industry sources and that's something we didn't want to do.

Fiduciary leaders splinter into two advocacy groups over divergent views
Knut Rostad takes six people with him to start the Institute for the Fiduciary Standard

Thursday 8.25.11
John Henry McDonald: [The man who was my succession plan] wanted to run a lifestyle practice, and I wanted to build a larger company. That was my toughest day, the day I fired him.

How a formerly homeless Vietnam veteran became a big-time RIA
The financial planner and blues guitarist took a 'miracles' course in Waco, Texas and is allergic to 'salesy' investments

Wednesday 8.24.11
Brian Shenson: This is really just the tip o the iceberg.

Beta test of Schwab's grand integration plan draws rave, but will the slow rollout prove detrimental?
Schwabinstitutional.com data flows freely into Salesforce.com's CRM in 12-RIA trial

Tuesday 8.23.11
Frank Germack: We wanted to show performance and we also wanted the ability to aggregate accounts as part of it.

Orion snags $2 billion Rehmann Financial account from Black Diamond
The mega-Michigan-based RIA had hyper-specialized needs

Tuesday 8.23.11
Margaret Towle: I'm really excited about the partnership structure.

Former Northern Trust CIO brings a cool billion and lofty credentials to HighTower
The RIA-to-RIA spin-away advisor will hold down offices in Seattle and Minneapolis and build support teams from scratch

Monday 8.22.11
Adam Antoniades: Becoming a free-standing company, with the financial support of a great partner in Lovell Minnick, will provide us with additional flexibility and resources to further accelerate our growth.

Private equity firm acquires First Allied
Lovell Minnick buys the San Diego IBD from Advanced Equities

Monday 8.22.11
Gene Goldman: I had butterflies in my stomach because I was so excited about the opportunity to work here.

Commonwealth, Cetera and The ETF Store take notable actions
Commonwealth replaces Fidelity technology; Cetera snags Gene Goldman; an LPL vet, and upstart ETF Store takes another page out of Adam Bold's book

Monday 8.22.11
Ed Beggs: Last year we had over 12 million forms downloaded from over 136,000 programmable pages.

Laser App is showing the prosaic business form's sexy side at its San Diego conference
Boring? Making the trip for the App Net event were folks from companies including: Schwab, TD Ameritrade, Pershing, Fidelity, Shareholders Service Group, Orion, Albridge, DST, Laserfiche, Redtail, MoneyGuidePro

Friday 8.19.11
Bart Bonga: I thought the apology was fairly tepid.

Was Schwab's letter of apology to RIAs good enough?
One advisor called the custodians reaction 'tepid' and others expressed have even stronger feelings

Friday 8.19.11
Kim Bang: The fixed-income markets are at a regulatory and competitive inflection point.

Executive leaves Bloomberg with ambitious plan to unify the retail bond market
Kim Bang has experience consolidating securities exchanges and signed on as CEO at BondDesk

Friday 8.19.11
Brian Hamburger: Rowe faces an uphill battle if he relied on oral statements.

RIA loses $10 million case against Raymond James the old-fashioned way
The case may have turned on the validity of written versus oral agreements

Thursday 8.18.11
David DeVoe: The new methodology ... removes institutional RIAs, such as hedge funds, mutual funds and separate account managers

Schwab redefines RIAs in its M&A study but experts say further refinement is needed
Registered Investment Advisors have $50 million of AUM and serve HNW investors

Thursday 8.18.11
Brooke Southall writes where quiet and caffeine abound.

RIABiz has its second birthday and reaches new milestones
The strategy remains the same - growth by good articles

Wednesday 8.17.11
Erik Ristuben: I'm not telling you that the all-clear has sounded on the beach but this information is not consistent with a recession.

Russell Investments' CIO tells advisors that data is 'not consistent' with a recession
Back away from the ledge: Despite a 'mediocre' recovery, economists at the big money manager see hopeful signs for the future

Wednesday 8.17.11
Chip Roame: Envestnet has the opportunity to dominate wealth management technology.

Envestnet and Chip Roame forge stronger tie
The large outsourcer has installed the high-profile consultant on its board of directors

Tuesday 8.16.11
Jeremy Norton: The burden falls squarely on advisors.

How RIAs can best pick alternative investments: Punt
This minefield is best left to experts with the right resources and expertise

Tuesday 8.16.11
Kevin Nichols: Social media can used to reassure jittery clients while prospecting for new ones.

Three ways to use social media in turbulent markets
Rocky markets are the perfect time to use LinkedIn to ask for introductions

Monday 8.15.11
Bryan Olson says the explosive growth doesn't include many RIA assets, which are expected to start kicking in soon..

Schwab's purchase of Windhaven made its asset growth soar -- and RIA assets may be the afterburners
The Boston-based phenom has gathered assets mightily in good markets but may do even better in bad ones

Monday 8.15.11
Joe Duran: we do not believe this is a redux of the 2008 debacle, but we are being cautious just in case. Finding market bottoms is a messy process.

Joe Duran calls current market hoopla The Great Perception Recession of 2011
On CNBC and in a letter to clients, the United Capital chief calls for caution but with a healthy dose of skepticism

Sunday 8.14.11
Tony Sirianni: Our biggest issue has been overwhelming demand.

Revenge of the branch managers: Washington Wealth is rapidly putting ex-wirehouse workers in play nationwide
The fledgling RIA is swamped with interest and likes its high-class problems

Friday 8.12.11
Maria Marsala: If your firm doesn't have a written social networking usage document, get involved with creating one. Volunteer as a test case.

Top 10 tips for the 'social' financial professional when creating your LinkedIn profile
A search will often produce a professional's LinkedIn profile before his or her website.

Friday 8.12.11
Dave Loeper: If advisors are using our process, they need to make sure they have the appropriate rights to it.

David Loeper is taking on UBS but his patent lawsuit is raising alarms in the RIA business
A pitched battle over the uniqueness of a financial planning process could result in thousands of advisors paying royalties

Thursday 8.11.11
Ron Rhoades: Public policy concerns may well influence the outcome of the Wealthcare vs. UBS litigation.

Legal analysis: The chances that Wealthcare beats UBS or upends the financial planning community
The patent lawsuit could have real consequences for financial advisors

Thursday 8.11.11
Brandon Thomas: Some clients say I don't care what my original target allocation is  - I want risk off the table.

100 advisors convene with Envestnet's Crager and Stategas' Rissmiller to share strategies for managing the market turmoil
Some clients are doubling down on equities

Thursday 8.11.11
Tim Oden: The amount of due diligence they're conducting is so deep. I just can't imagine they'd go to that trouble to just kick the tires.

Breakaway Movement II is kicking in, say Schwab and Fidelity execs
Spurred by waning wirehouse retention packages, a wave of advisors are poised to jump ship in 2012

Wednesday 8.10.11
Mark Casady and other LPL execs were front and center at the exhibit hall available to talk to advisors.

Six important things I learned about LPL at its focus11 conference in Chicago
Amid market madness, LPL announced that it had a rollover plan, gave its blessing to advisors starting their own RIAs and much more.

Wednesday 8.10.11
'It's amazing how everyone's perspective changes once someone declares the emperor has no clothes.'

Most provocative tweets of the RIA week
Market melee sets advisors a-Twitter using humor, sarcasm, downright frustration and off-color language to express themselves

Wednesday 8.10.11
LPL has taken over McCormick Place in Chicago

LPL keeps advisors abreast of careening markets at focus11 conference
Responding to a crisis situation, LPL adds computers, televisions and market updates to the mix

Tuesday 8.9.11
Bill Dwyer: We decided you were right.

What's behind LPL's decision to slash its ticket charges for advisors
The IBD is in a generous mood as it also pays dues to FSI on behalf of thousands

Tuesday 8.9.11
Jim O'Neill: I don't think the Fed's hands are tied at all.

Goldman Sachs' O'Neill gives optimistic report on conference call despite Standard & Poor's downgrade of US bonds
China's strong growth is the real leading indicator but the economist admits to losing some sleep

Tuesday 8.9.11
Brent Burns: The key to managing the downside is keeping the bond and equity portfolios separate in your client's mind.

What plunging equity prices say about bonds as a hedge for stocks
In a world of sophisticated hedges, the simplest way may still be best

Tuesday 8.9.11
Ben Valore-Caplan: We do not see the Standard & Poor downgrade to be a reason to materially alter investment strategy unless your investment objectives have changed or you were not prepared for this environment in the first place.

What RIAs need to know about the Standard & Poor's downgrade of US debt
For starters, some Fortune 500 companies already had lower borrowing rates than the US Treasury

Monday 8.8.11
Jud Bergman: They were FundQuest clients. The vast majority had no access to PMC.

Why exactly Envestnet bought an investment manager that already sat on its platform
The $24 million purchase means FundQuest advisors will have direct access to PMC funds and avoids 'customer inducement costs'

Monday 8.8.11
Mike Byrnes: If calls come in, do not let them go to voicemail.

RIAs need to step it up in this market turmoil - or pay the consequences
It's vacation time but this opportunity to keep clients and win prospects won't last

Monday 8.8.11
Watson is expected to help achieve the company's goal of establishing increased personal contact with advisors

LPL lures a TD Ameritrade talent across the San Diego street
Mike Watson will bring his practice-management expertise to 1,400 LPL reps

Friday 8.5.11
Bill Dwyer: They probably just wore us down. The press just asked for more and more access.

LPL opens focus11 to reporters for first time - with provisos
With the big IBD's business mix tilting more toward RIA custody, more open media policies seem to have followed

Friday 8.5.11
Steve Ambuul: One of the things I'm doing right now is making sure that we can get data feeds from Orion, AssetBook, and other competitors of ours.

Ebix may hit a CRM sweet spot for some RIAs
The strategic acquirer bought its way into wealth management CRM in 2009 but the 'rollup' label helped depress the company's shares

Thursday 8.4.11
Michael Joyce: You could write several articles about the go-to-the-mat battles I've had with trust companies.

Michael Joyce buys a stake in National Advisors Trust after taking a pass 10 years ago
Deal nets access to cheap trust services, a capital investment, the possibility of a dividend and a close-knit group of RIAs

Thursday 8.4.11
John Smallwood: We knew we made the wrong decision but that was July 2008 and the world blew up and we were stuck.

Three advisors tell why they fled Securities America for Commonwealth
Scandal soured the advisors on the Securities America and set them on a search for a firm with a compatible culture

Wednesday 8.3.11
Jason Lahita:  It is similar to going to court - sure, you can represent yourself but above a certain level you'll probably be outmatched and under-prepared for the experience.

Advisors should go all-in to make PR worthwhile – otherwise, steer clear
Becoming a journalistic source takes planning, time, commitment and an enjoyment of the process

Wednesday 8.3.11
Many of Paul Pagnato and David Karp's clientele have security concerns so they keep a low profile - including no photos.

Fearless Merrill Lynch team breaks away with $1 billion in broad daylight
Paul Pagnato and David Karp started their day in Washington DC and ended up in Reston, Va.

Tuesday 8.2.11
Pat Allen: You have to be able to improv with RIAs. They have their own agenda. The whole idea of the ad campaign is passé.

Why RIAs would rather go to Twitter than talk to a wholesaler
Asset managers are cutting out the middle-man by going straight to the Web, study says

Tuesday 8.2.11
Michael Martin has a new business plan for The Mutual Fund Store that involves big-league capital and expertise.

How Warburg Pincus plans to grow The Mutual Fund Store several-fold
National advertising, a shift to more company stores from franchises, delivering services by an e-commerce site and using ETFs are on the table at The Mutual Fund Store

Monday 8.1.11
Rick Kahler: I have the magic 5% of clients panicking.

RIAs are managing client fears surrounding the debt ceiling crisis
Harvey Rowen of Starmont gave clients demanding out of the market a constructive way to approach it

Monday 8.1.11

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