Thursday, March 09, 2017

Barron's "top financial advisors"

Included in the Wall Street Journal today was a supplement from Barron's that purported to detail the top financial advisors to individuals in all 50 states.  It was an interesting 10 minutes of scanning but the list seemed incomplete.  The firms that had overwhelmingly the largest amount of advisors listed were Merrill Lynch, Morgan Stanley, and Wells Fargo.  Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan Chase were firms of not one of the 1200 advisors listed.

Did they not participate?  Are their clients too upscale to be a large enough base for the survey. Certainly both firms are active in this area through their private banking groups.

Of all the advisors listed there were two that made this huge list that I had known in the past(yes I guess that took more than 10 minutes).  When they were known to me, one was an exceedingly earnest and serious guy to the point of being boring, but he certainly would come across as trustworthy.  The other was always more style than substance but that can work too.  Good for them.

The other observation was that Fidelity and Schwab were also nowhere on the list.  That can be explained partially by the fact that both have a huge base of self directed clients, but in recent years that have actively solicited clients for management responsibility for a fee.  Even Vanguard now has individual client managers for investors of more than $500,000 who want management services.  Did they participate or did their heritage put them too far behind.  But, too far behind Wells Fargo?


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