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Articles Published July 2012


Jack Bogle is the first of seven big names that Advizent plans to put on its board.

Advizent makes Jack Bogle its standards czar, a no-pay, no-conflict position
The RIA brand will depend on a gold standard of rules and audits

Tuesday 7.31.12
Brett Kaufman: Everyone now has a lifetime gift exclusion amount of $5 million per person and a 35% gift tax rate for gifts over $5 million.

An expert updates 7 matters related to the estate tax
2012 looms large for change

Tuesday 7.31.12
Ken Weber says he knows Fidelity funds better than the company's reps.

How two RIAs succeed by using only Fidelity funds -- but not without weathering criticism about closing their own architecture
The heads of Weber Asset Management are unfazed by peers and analysts who says they are taking brand loyalty too far

Monday 7.30.12
 Kelly Rodriques: Even if an asset is currently worthless, advisors still need to transfer that asset to a successor custodian.

The 30-day alternative assets challenge: Finding the right successor custodian
Deftly remediating alternative assets held in retirement accounts can strengthen the client-advisor bond and avoid a dreaded 'taxable event'

Friday 7.27.12
Jon Beatty: We see private equity participating directly and indirectly through the national acquiring firms.

Even as mired markets stalled Q2 merger deals, private-equity-fueled national acquirers revved up prices
Only eight M&A deals were inked in the second quarter according to Schwab Advisor Services but what there was, was 'cherce'

Friday 7.27.12
Jonathan Drubner: I knew if I could just find a mentor and someone who shared my philosophical views that I would be happy.

Why an ESPN sportscaster and comedian turned in his blazer to join a Los Angeles RIA -- and why the firm took a chance on him
In what may be an industry trend, L&S advisors is betting on a career-changer with more to offer than experience

Thursday 7.26.12
Tim Kochis: I winced when I detected a slight tone of condescension in the presentation.

Ex-RIA chief: 'How I learned more in a month as a client than in 20 years as CEO'
Aspiriant's Tim Kochis and his wife experienced firsthand the upsides and downsides of being paying clients

Wednesday 7.25.12
John Sullivan: At some point, there was no turning back.

Dynasty Financial recruits another field general from the Citi-Smith Barney army
John Sullivan will do some of the heavy lifting from Chicago on advisor service and be a subject matter expert for lending

Wednesday 7.25.12
Eugene Lerner: As we can do some good, I'll be here.

How HighTower brought an 83-year-old, $600-million breakaway broker back from the wirehouse side
After Eugene Lerner moved his RIA to Morgan Stanley Smith Barney, HighTower lured the former pupil of Milton Friedman and professor of Alan Greenspan back to the RIA world

Tuesday 7.24.12
When the fog lifts, San Francisco has a case to make.

Why the San Francisco Bay area is almost certainly the capitol of the RIA business
Companies like Schwab, Advent-Black Diamond and Salesforce are based here for starters -- but big wealth managers and lots of open-minded rich people clinch the matter

Monday 7.23.12
Josh Kernan: I'm most concerned about these feeder fund platforms. You've actually created an additional level of risk to be concerned about.

A cottage industry of hedge funds-to-RIAs is springing up but so far the mutual fund industry looks like the big winner
It's a minor gold rush, but the entrepreneurs jumping into the niche are quick to identify the frailties in each other's approaches

Friday 7.20.12
Mag Black-Scott: Our goal is to have billions of assets in the next few years and we will.

Mag Black-Scott plans for an LA-based 'mini-Morgan Stanley' advance with the hire of a R.W. Baird team to handle public agency assets
Andy Fass, formerly a Morgan stanley exec, joins Beverly Hills Wealth Management as western division marketing director and half of new group aimed at big assets with small profit margins

Thursday 7.19.12
Stuart Silverman: We're not saying: 'Let's take the culture for 250 (the existing Fusion advisors) and bring it to (all) 1,400 (NFP reps firms).

National Financial Partners buys longtime partner Fusion signaling a shift away from the 'roll-up' model
The New York-based agglomeration of financial businesses is looking to inject higher levels of intelligence, best practices and culture by bringing the services of Fusion in-house

Wednesday 7.18.12
Adam Birenbaum: We all have our own individual management agreements, which is important to understand.

What RIA principals in the Focus Financial family have to say about a rumored deal for the consolidator
Buckingham/BAM, The Colony Group and LLBH leaders see it as business as usual that Summit would want to roll over ownership of its stake

Tuesday 7.17.12
Les Abromovitz: Policies and procedures can protect elderly clients who exhibit signs of a cognitive impairment.

Older investors' complaints deserve -- and receive -- special scrutiny from regulators
Examiners give seniors the benefit of the doubt in a complaint, making it imperative to keep meticulous records focusing on not just the 'what' but the 'why' of investment decisions

Tuesday 7.17.12
Rebecca Pomering: Sometimes, you've got to paint the wall green to know that you don't like that shade.

Why the Moss Adams-Rowling Dold merger came apart despite looking picture-perfect on paper
Rigorous due diligence and good will count for a lot -- but not everything, as two ultimately mismatched RIAs were surprised to discover

Monday 7.16.12
Debra Taylor:  None of my clients has balked at it. If a manager doesn't perform, they will be fired.

LPL Financial sees explosive asset growth of model portfolios by linking BlackRock and J.P. Morgan-level brand names to the little guy
The big IBD saw a 72% jump in assets for its Model Wealth Portfolios platform to near $9 billion after lowering account minimums to $25,000 from $100,000

Friday 7.13.12
Sheldon Geller: Engaging non-fiduciary consultants and relying on their advice is not evidence of prudence.

9 things advisors to 401(k) plans must do to keep clients out of hot water
A wave of fiduciary lawsuits is creating new plan best practices

Friday 7.13.12
Eric Clarke and Chip Roame atop Mount Whitney

How RIA industry execs took on the ultimate teamwork challenge: Conquering the highest summit in the lower 48
Training regimens for the group -- including a Green Beret and a Gulf War veteran -- ranged from crossing the Brooklyn Bridge to Google searches for portable bottles of oxygen

Thursday 7.12.12
Marty Bicknell: It's not a coincidence at all.

On its march to $50 billion, Mariner finds its groove buying RIAs connected to accounting firms
First it was CBIZ, now Orizon Investment Counsel, and Marty Bicknell doesn't plan to stop there as he notes accounting firms want to get back to their core business

Thursday 7.12.12
Michael Hull: There's no question we were going to be together.

Brothers reunite as a $3.8 billion ex-Graystone team forms its own RIA
Morgan Stanley Smith Barney's elite consulting unit pushed out the older brother based on alleged wrongdoing and his younger brother spearheaded a breakaway to rejoin him

Wednesday 7.11.12
Sheri Smith was hired to create a river of referrals flowing to United Capital's 38 offices

United Capital makes three exec hires, including a veteran recruiter from Raymond James
The big Newport Beach, Calif.-based RIA and consolidator is putting big dollars toward turning existing offices into marketing and recruiting machines

Wednesday 7.11.12
Kent Smetters: One of the pain points of a TAMP is that it takes so long to put together a plan.

LPL Financial rolls up an unusual RIA to use as a cornerstone of its TAMP-like mass-market venture
The big broker-dealer is buying Veritat Advisors, renaming it NestWise, and using a Wharton professor's technology to crack the case of managing multi-hundred-client practices

Tuesday 7.10.12
Rob Isbitts: An over-diversified portfolio can look like an attempt to cover the advisor’s behind.

How 5 seriously overworked buzzwords can come between you and your client
They're on the lips everyone in the industry, but we've lost sight of what they really mean; here's a refresher course

Tuesday 7.10.12
Mathew Goldberg: They didn't care.

JPMorgan breakaways make Page One of the New York Times after $9-billion loss puts spotlight on Dimon's bank
It's a familiar story of pushing proprietary product and advisors not going for it -- but under a sterling brand

Monday 7.9.12
Steve Ippolito: You've got $8 million and you're not getting any attention, really?

By hiring a Fidelity sales veteran, National Advisors Trust goes after the $1 million to $10 million client who use $500 million RIAs
Steve Ippolito, an RIA-savvy veteran of Schwab and Fidelity, will also work with existing member firms

Friday 7.6.12
Frank Troise: Advisors can now acquire new business each day for the price of a Starbucks coffee.

How Google Love can put an RIA onto an equal marketing footing with BlackRock
The big search engine -- and the web in general -- may be the two technologies most neglected by advisors

Friday 7.6.12
Independence doesn't have to be thought of in terms of bayonets and bandages, or does it?

Dynasty fetes its RIAs with bottles of bubbly on the Fourth -- but with an anti-revolutionary message
Popping a cork to celebrate newly independent advisors is a grand idea. But is it revolution or evolution?

Thursday 7.5.12
Andrew Russell: It will be a rough couple of years but I think as a nation we'll grow to accept it and be a healthier nation.

RIAs see mostly silver linings in the wake of Supreme Court's decision on Obamacare
As small business owners and financial shepherds of human flocks, accessible and affordable health care is a good thing

Thursday 7.5.12
Drew Nordlicht: We spent more of our time explaining the trust aspect of the firm.

Luring a $330 million team away from UBS, HighTower opens first San Diego office
After five years at Smith Barney, HighTower convinces the team to complete second big move in five years

Tuesday 7.3.12
Jack Waymire: Wall Street does not want advisors to have track records.

6 reasons why RIAS can't -- or don't want to -- have track records
If clients are confused by myriad FA titles they're baffled as to why advisors can't can't produce their investment histories

Tuesday 7.3.12
Hall Capital's new home provides more room for a growing staff and swankier accommodations for its high-end clientele

Why a $23 billion San Fran-based RIA has doubled its square footage in NYC
Catering to uber-wealthy foundation and endowment clientele, Hall Partners broke an eight-year lease to find swankier digs

Monday 7.2.12
Rob Isbitts: Past performance guarantees one thing: That you cannot have that past performance.

The 4 biggest investment performance myths -- and how they can torpedo advisor-client trust
How to sidestep Wall Street mythology and give clients a clarified perspective on the ups and downs of their investments

Monday 7.2.12

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