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Brooke

Brooke Southall

Managing Principal, Reporter

brooke@riabiz.com
415.389.8207

Brooke is known locally in Sausalito, Calif. as a cyclist, houseboater, and the guy with the huge dogs. On the web he's known as a regular voice on the happenings of the RIA business. He started RIABiz in 2009 after deciding the industry could use a more focused channel of information, which has proven to be the case.

He oversees the flow of articles on RIABiz, but still gets to spend a considerable amount of time reporting and writing. Somehow he manages to pump out story after story despite his frequently crashing Windows laptop and his hunt-and-peck typing method.

Articles written by Brooke Southall


Karin Risi: To the extent there's conflict, it's always been there.

How exactly Vanguard Group -- with a dash of robo and lots of mojo -- went from a virtual unknown in wealth management to posing a threat to Merrill Lynch
The fund giant has 250 CFPs on staff for VPAS in Malvern, Charlotte and Scottsdale and virtually no minimum or maximum client size

Monday 7.14.14
Bob McCann: To be the world’s greatest wealth management firm, I believe you need a strong investment bank.

The 13 most telling quotes from UBS's Bob McCann in his Washington Post interview
The ex-Merrill brokerage chief's comments walk the RIA-wirehouse line

Friday 7.11.14
Shirl Penney: The whole idea is to make it engaging and for the most pressing questions to be asked.

Shirl Penney will grill three of his big vendors on stage in Vegas: Mike Durbin, Mark Tibergien and Bernie Clark
At the MarketCounsel event, the Dynasty Financial chief promises not to toss softballs at the RIA custody heads, saying he knows their strengths and weaknesses

Thursday 7.10.14
Bill Chetney: I went to Mark Casady and Robert Moore and said: This is my natural habitat. I'd like to lead but from this format.

Bill Chetney is back to compete with LPL (among others) and Mark Casady is very much on board
His new $40-billion OSJ start-up will use the LPL hybrid platform and get a hand from the broker-dealer in procuring a right-to-recruit agreement and software

Wednesday 7.9.14
Helena Jonassen: It was an enormously difficult decision for me to leave U. S. Trust.

Helena Jonassen bids farewell to US Trust after 18 years to rejoin breakaway colleagues at Evercore
The senior trust and fiduciary officer at the BoA subsidary is starting a new life at Evercore

Tuesday 7.8.14
Bill Crager: We will leverage our core competency of converting large books of business.

After years of working to stand on its own two feet, Placemark staggers into the arms of Envestnet
The future looked nova-bright in 2006 when Smith Barney labelled the Dallas-based advisor, but since then the UMA specialist has fallen short of expectations

Thursday 7.3.14
Wayne Bloom:  We're really a great big RIA.

What's up with J.D. Power naming Commonwealth top IBD for the fourth straight year
One trick, Wayne Bloom says, is that he relentlessly squeezes feedback out of his 1,600 advisors

Wednesday 7.2.14
John Schlifske: The proceeds from the sale will cap off what has proven to be a good investment for Northwestern Mutual.

Russell Investments sells for $2.7 billion and the new owner will flip its $250-billion asset manager -- yet again
The once-proud, family-owned Seattle firm is being sold by Northwestern Mutual and stripped for parts -- its indexes -- with its asset-management business as the throwaway

Saturday 6.28.14
Michael Paley: It would have been tougher to leave three years ago. It was still in the prove-it mode.

How a $1.3-billion Manhattan, Raymond James RIA won a top exec from the roll-up down the street: Focus Financial
Michael Paley comes to Klingman & Assoc. with a mandate to add billions in AUM for his fellow-but-elder Princeton tiger

Wednesday 6.25.14
Brooke Southall: We all live in glass houses and RIABiz is no exception -- especially when you ask for criticism.

RIABiz gets some intense third-party feedback loaded with affirmations and a few wake-up calls
A Huffington Post column and our first-ever survey help define just what a pure online publication for RIAs should look like

Monday 6.23.14
John Thiel: People are looking for advisors who understand that the retirement conversation isn’t about a math equation.

How Merrill Lynch Clear looks so impressively RIA-like and what shows how deceptive looks can be
The big iPad-laced and rhetoric-laced wirehouse initiative toward goals-based investing may have selling insurance as its primary goal

Wednesday 6.18.14
Mark Casady: We are standing on the threshold of a new era.

LPL Financial is dumping North Carolina as a headquarters, moving south to make room for 1,800 more employees
The Boston-, Charlotte- and San Diego-based broker-dealer is constructing a giant office-park eco-building

Monday 6.16.14
Fred Tomczyk: Many market destinations are in the business of making markets. They provide liquidity, and revenue sharing is part of their business model.

Preparing to appear before Senate subcommittee, TD Ameritrade discloses order-routing revenue
The company made $236 million in revenue sharing in 2013

Friday 6.13.14
Chris Gardner: I would have gone down with the ship with everyone else.

My conversation with Chris Gardner and his new Pursuit of Happyness
The real guy played by Will Smith is pursuing a post-financial industry life -- or not

Thursday 6.12.14
Joan Khoury will help to transition the people taking her duties.

LPL's Robert Moore makes his next moves -- and this time Joan Khoury is out
As LPL seeks its voice as a corporation, the company will go a new direction for marketing with reently hired Morgan Stanley and Russell Investments talent

Thursday 6.5.14
Erinn Ford: That objectivity is of utmost importance.

How Erinn Ford feels about life under Nicolas Schorsch as she takes the helm at Cetera's most RIA custody-like arm
Ford's enthusiasm for her new overlord is real but she makes no bones about continued vigilance when it comes to vetting non-traded REITs

Friday 5.23.14
Tim Welsh: You know the gig is up. That's their core competency.

Bloomberg: BoA's market-making unit for its Merrill Lynch wealth division gets suddenly scrapped
The news and data giant is reporting that heat from Flash Boys made the investment bank think twice about conflicts

Thursday 5.22.14
Stuart DePina of Tamarac is Envestnet's RIA connection

Observations on the Envestnet Advisor Summit from the carsick seat of a Chicago taxi cab
Brian Hamburger relayed his thoughts on 36 hours at Jud Bergman's 'house' on the way to the airport

Friday 5.16.14
Natalie Wolfsen steps into a position tailored to her marketing and product-management strengths

Natalie Wolfsen is leaving New York to reunite with Charles Goldman out West
The ex-Schwab, ex-Pershing product exec assumes Myra Rothfeld's duties and then some

Tuesday 5.13.14
Mark Thatcher: You don't want to let your ego to get in the way.

Schwab wins $740-million team as part of an RIA dolphin-swallows-wirehouse whale story near Chuck's winter home
Integrated Wealth Management nabbed The Cypress Group from Morgan Stanley after putting Tamarac in place

Friday 5.9.14
Eric Clarke:  It's an open source thought process that will have some calling us crazy.

Eric Clarke rolls the API dice by posting Orion software's code online
By putting 50,000 lines of code all on GitHub, the Orion exec risks giant intellectual capital giveaway -- but the upside is tremendous, observers say

Thursday 5.8.14
Chris Housen: I wasn't looking for a marriage. I wasn't even looking for a date.

Housen deal shows Marty Bicknell can make it in Jersey -- by word of mouth
The Kansas-based serial buyer's Mariner, now with $9.5 billion of assets, is knocking down big down-to-earth deals

Thursday 5.1.14
Dave Welling accepts congrats from Gov. Rick Scott in Florida for creating a mini-Silicon Valley in Jacksonville.

Advent Software hits the local news in Jacksonville
Florida Gov. Rick Scott comes calling as the software maker's East Coast hub hits 145 employees with plans for a quick doubling

Monday 4.28.14
Stuart DePina: It does close the gap with Salesforce.

Tamarac doubles down on Microsoft to be more like Salesforce
Stuart DePina has beyond-skin-deep reason for liking Microsoft Dynamics but Salesforce has prettier-girl attributes

Monday 4.28.14
Joel Bruckenstein: When you're strong you can afford to overpay a little bit.

How Joe Mansueto's purchase of ByAllAccounts is mostly a show of faith in the Morningstar brand, global reach and the future of asset-quarterbacking as a billable service
The Woburn, Mass.-based aggregator has the dubious distinction of being a near-monopolist that can't quite crack the profits puzzle, sources say

Friday 4.25.14
Cathy Clauson will act as the connective tissue between sales and the C-suite.

Charles Goldman recruits his one-time Schwab leftenant to be his right-hand woman at AssetMark
Cathy Clauson fills newly created position related to TAMP sales

Friday 4.25.14
Jon Stein: I think anything's possible. That  [Betterment RIA business] could be the larger business [than the retail one] in the long term.

How Jon Stein plans to make the most of $45 million of VC money in remaking the RIA business
The Betterment founder says he is open to his B-to-B, read RIA unit, knocking his B-to-C business out of the spotlight

Tuesday 4.22.14
Eduardo Repetto: He is an excellent person to take on this critical role.

Dimensional Fund Advisors gives its globe-trotting co-CEO some relief by elevating another literal rocket scientist
The Austin-based firm is putting more CEO duties on Eduardo Repetto, and letting Gerard O'Reilly do the heavy CIO lifting

Friday 4.11.14
Ned Johnson is pitching his fund brethren on a trading club concept.

In wake of high frequency trading hoopla, Fidelity Investments is designing 'Sakura' to secure better trades for its 'shareholders'
Chairman Ned Johnson is personally pushing the bold move

Thursday 4.10.14
Steve Lockshin: I wrote a big check.

Tiburon CEO Summit extrudes big news: Betterment Institutional is born
Steve Lockshin lays out his plans for TAMP-like venture and how Michael Kitces, a public critic of the Betterment CEO, very much fits in

Tuesday 4.8.14
Derek Bruton: It allowed me to step back and look at all I had accomplished to date and where I wanted to go from here.  In the short term, I will be taking some time to prioritize and recharge.

What is the story with Derek Bruton's sudden LPL departure?
The powerful veteran seemed to be in the prime of his career and rising with a long track record of goodwill

Sunday 4.6.14
Walter Bettinger and Charles Schwab: It is time to treat the cancer aggressively.

Chuck Schwab and Walter Bettinger issue call to squash flash traders but RIAs question hysteria over the issue
Calling robo-traders a 'cancer', the Schwab execs lash out while Norm Boone and other advisors question whether this is a battle to pick

Thursday 4.3.14
Joe Mansueto sees the buy 'particularly bolstering our offerings that support an advisor’s workflow.'

Why Morningstar's purchase of ByAllAccounts might be a bigger deal than its paltry $28-million price tag shows
The Chicago firm becomes the king of charging for held-away assets facilitation and has a view into the data of its competitors

Wednesday 4.2.14
Brooke Southall: By using 'robo' we say to snippy entrepreneurs: Take your cutesy website, your fancy VC backing, your geeks and your Harvard, Stanford or MIT degree and go back to your ivory tower.

Why I find the term 'robo-advisor' objectionable and unhelpful
In the end, all good advisors will likely be both bionic and biological and terms of art creating a false distinction are unhelpful

Tuesday 4.1.14
Carrie Gallaway's team had to write a check to Morgan Stanley but sees a long-term play with Lebenthal.

What exactly lured a sparkling Morgan Stanley advisor and $1.2 billion to a retreaded brand name attached to a fledgling RIA
Carrie Gallaway and partner Andrew Stern got no signing bonus but the Lebenthal brand, and what Frank Campanale is building with Fortigent, Envestnet and BNY Mellon, attracted them

Friday 3.28.14


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