BlackRock integrates retirement income calculator with eMoney

BlackRock continues its push into the market of retail financial advisers with a new integration between its iRetire retirement income calculator and eMoney Advisor, one of the most popular financial planning tools among independent advisers. Advisers can use iRetire to illustrate how working longer, saving more, spending less and changing investment strategies can impact their […]

Finra panel awards adviser $1.2 million from defunct broker-dealer

A Finra arbitration panel has ruled in favor of adviser Brian Taylor Kirkpatrick in a share-ownership dispute with his former employer Capital Guardian Wealth Management, a now defunct broker-dealer. According to the dispute resolution from the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority Inc., Mr. Kirkpatrick has been awarded $1.2 million for his 15% ownership stake in Capital […]

3 big reasons to do a Roth conversion right now

Lower tax rates, a slumping stock market and the time of year offer pristine conditions for financial advisers to do a Roth conversion with clients. Roth conversions allow clients to convert all or a portion of their traditional, pretax individual retirement account assets into a Roth IRA. Clients pay the tax upfront in exchange for […]

Wall Street banks parse US data in search of recession signs

Wall Street’s biggest banks are scouring U.S. data for signals of an impending recession. On balance, they’ve been finding that a 2019 downturn still isn’t likely — though it’s becoming slightly more so. The current expansion is eight months away from becoming the longest in postwar history. Most indicators remain solid enough to suggest it’ll […]

Fidelity dominates money-market industry as assets grow to $629 billion

Fidelity Investments is dominating a business that is thriving even as stocks and bonds struggle. Fidelity’s money-market assets grew to $629 billion as of Oct. 31 — nearly twice as much as its closest rival, Vanguard Group, according to Crane Data. The Boston-based fund company has added more than $50 billion this year, mostly from […]

A younger spouse can lower required minimum distributions

Here’s one I haven’t heard before. I received a question from a financial adviser wondering if he could help his client reduce his required minimum distribution burden and the resulting tax on his $2 million individual retirement account by using the Joint Life and Last Survivor Expectancy Table (IRS Publication 590-B, Table II). The client […]

The R Word

You better hope interest rates didn’t just peak for the cycle with the 10-year failing at 3.05%. So says Ari Wald (technician at OpCo), whose chart this weekend looks at 10-year treasury yield breakdowns as a leading (or coincident) indicator for major turning points in the S&P 500 / economy. Here’s Ari: Looking back at […]

You can’t deduct IRA losses any more

As of 2018, it is no longer possible to deduct IRA losses from your income. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2018 eliminated this and many other miscellaneous itemized deductions. Prior to 2018, if you had losses in your IRA with non-deductible contributions, you could cash out the entire IRA and deduct the loss […]


I’ll have more thoughts on this later. Here’s the lead markets story at the Journal today: Going back to the 1980s, the S&P 500 has typically rebounded after posting a weekly loss, such as the punishing setback it suffered last week. This year, that “buy-the-dip” trend has broken apart. The broad index has fallen an […]

Understanding FPA National’s “OneFPA Network” Plan To Dissolve And Consolidate Its Own Chapters

Executive Summary It’s no secret that the Financial Planning Association has struggled for many years with stagnant membership amidst an increasingly difficult and competitive landscape for membership associations given both the rise of social media (and more online platforms for people to connect outside of traditional networking and professional associations) and intra-industry competition from other […]

Move Over FIRE, Welcome DIRE: Delay, Inherit, Retire, Expire

When I first started writing about achieving  financial independence early in 2009, I never thought the FIRE movement would reach such a huge level of interest a decade later. After all, only misfits decide to aggressively forgo material pleasures, save 50% or more of their incomes, and retire from well-paying jobs in their 30s and […]

Investing in Conservation Easements

Q. Should I invest in conservation easements? I keep hearing good things about them but don’t really understand how they work or whether it is a good idea. Conservation Easement Investments Have High Abuse Potential A. Conservation easements are a great idea, in theory. Here’s the way they work. Basically, if you are willing to […]

The Worst Narrative In Cryptocurrencies

Successful investing is often more so about how to avoid bad ideas than it is about finding the right ideas.¹ In the last year there has been no place worse to be than cryptocurrencies with most of them down 85%+. Despite this I still see lots of optimists pushing cryptos based on narratives that are […]

Success stories: South

1 Jasper Ridge Partners201 Main Street, Suite 1000Fort Worth, TX 76102 (817) $18,374.70 41 $17,715.40 36 $659.30 5 80 2 WE Family Offices701 Brickell Avenue, Suite 2100Miami, FL 33131 (305) $7,344.20 71 $0.00 0 $7,344.20 71 48 3 CV Advisors19495 Biscayne Boulevard, Suite 808Aventura, FL 33180 (305) $5,608.90 567 $559.50 105 $5,049.40 […]

Success stories: West

1 Hall Capital PartnersOne Maritime Plaza, 6th FloorSan Francisco, CA 94111 (415) $36,391.90 170 $10,615.00 57 $25,776.90 113 142 2 Comprehensive Financial Management720 University Avenue, Suite 200Los Gatos, CA 95032 (408) 358-3316 $15,222.70 43 $15,222.70 43 $0.00 0 27 3 Aspiriant11100 Santa Monica Boulevard, Suite 600Los Angeles, CA 90025 (310) $12,213.70 8,493 $10,658.70 […]

Midwestern magic? RIA assets soared nearly 30% there last year

It might be too soon to say that the big coastal cities are losing their mojo, but from a financial planning perspective the latest momentum favors some of the sleepier areas of the Midwest. An InvestmentNews analysis of SEC-registered RIAs shows a 29.2% year-over-year growth in assets under management for Midwest-based registered investment advisers. That’s […]

For Silvercrest Asset Management Group, client referrals were gold

Silvercrest Asset Management Group is a multi-family-office advisory firm that credits client referrals for much of its growth to $21.3 billion. Founded in 2002, the New York-based advisory firm has clients in 47 states. Richard Hough III, who joined the firm in 2003 and worked his way up to become chairman and CEO five years […]

This Miami-based firm has a $50 million minimum

It is interesting and rare that half of the $7.3 billion under management at WE Family Offices is from non-U.S. clients. But what’s even more interesting is that when the firm launched five years ago, there were no U.S. clients. “Our domestic growth has been strong, but it’s not that we’ve acquired a lot of […]

For Los Angeles-based RIA Aspiriant, growth is crucial yet deliberate

Aspiriant is a $12.2 billion advisory firm fueled by grand aspirations of a national network and brand. Rob Francais, CEO of the Los Angeles-based RIA, wants to take independent financial planning down the same path followed by national accounting firms and law firms. “Why isn’t there a large independent advisory organization that’s focused on the […]

Success stories: Northeast

Rank Firm Phone/website Total Discretionary Nondiscretionary Employees assets ($M) accounts assets ($M) accounts assets ($M) accounts 1 Silvercrest Asset Management Group1330 Avenue Of The Americas, 38th FloorNew York, NY 10019 (212) $21,340.20 1,219 $15,998.10 1,190 $5,342.20 29 122 2 BBR PartnersTwo Grand Central Tower, 140 East 45th Street, 26th FloorNew York, NY 10017 (212) […]

Success stories: Midwest

1 Moneta Group Investment Advisors100 South Brentwood, Suite 500Clayton, MO 63105 (314) $18,512.80 23,418 $6,855.30 1,731 $11,657.50 21,687 285 2 Bahl & Gaynor Inc.255 East Fifth Street, Suite 2700Cincinnati, OH 45202 (513) $11,652.40 2,195 $10,832.90 2,112 $819.60 83 24 3 Brownson, Rehmus & Foxworth Inc.200 S. Wacker Drive, Suite 2300Chicago, IL 60606 (312) […]

5 Financial Considerations When Taking Care of Your Aging Parents

[Editor’s Note: For today’s WCI Network post we hear from Passive Income, MD about how he has approached the problem of making sure his parents are taken care of financially as they get older. If you think there are vast differences between the financial situation of one doctor compared to another, those pale in comparison […]

How financial services firms can help employee caregivers

Financial services firms are in the business of caring for customers — resolving issues, addressing multiple needs and providing a high-touch experience. But some of that care and concern should be directed to our own employees, many of whom currently serve, or will serve in the future as the caregiver of a senior family member. […]

Weekend Reading for Financial Planners (Dec 8-9)

Executive Summary Enjoy the current installment of “weekend reading for financial planners” – this week’s edition kicks off with the latest edition of Financial Planning magazine’s annual Advisor Technology survey, showing the most widely adopted advisor software tools in various categories… and highlighting that, with the proliferation of advisor technology, the problem now is not the […]

Wentworth Management Services buys World Equity Group

Broker-dealer M&A activity continues as 2018 draws to a close, with Wentworth Management Services on Friday announcing its acquisition of World Equity Group, a midsized independent broker-dealer outside Chicago with close to 180 brokers and nearly $40 million in annual revenue. It was the second acquisition of a midsized broker-dealer in less than two weeks. […]

Finra exams find fault with sales of variable annuities, nontraded REITs and private placements

Variable annuities, nontraded REITs and private placements are among the primary areas in which brokerage firms and their representatives have demonstrated lax compliance, according to a new Finra report detailing recent examination findings. The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority Inc. found that some firms overly concentrated retail customers in illiquid securities such as nontraded real estate […]

Alternative strategies prove their worth as stocks turn bearish

Though liquid alternative mutual fund categories have generally been out of favor against the backdrop of the roaring multiyear bull market for stocks, over the past few months, most categories have stepped up as noncorrelated strategies. Market-neutral funds, which aim to reduce market beta risk, are down just 26 basis points on average over the […]

A mastermind of survival, Credit Suisse CEO must now jump-start a turnaround

Tidjane Thiam is still standing. By simply surviving as chief of Credit Suisse Group AG, the Ivory Coast-born trained engineer has done what more experienced bankers couldn’t in trying to fix Europe’s troubled banks. With a restructuring plan he masterminded coming to an end this month, Mr. Thiam’s next feat will be to prove to […]

Orange Theory

Today’s WSJ on how the President theorizes over his role in what the Dow Jones does from day to day… Publicly, Mr. Trump has often dismissed market fluctuations as part of a natural correction, but several people close to the president say he places as much importance on the health of the Dow Jones Industrial […]

Wealthfront offers Path financial planning software free: Flash briefing for December 7, 2018

[embedded content] Here are the links to today’s top stories: Introducing Free Financial Planning from Wealthfront SEI Strengthens Automated Workflows through Strategic Partnership with Advizr from PRNewswire See the New RightCapital/Advyzon Integration in Action from RightCapital Welcome to a new FPPad fintech briefing, Here are the top fintech stories you need to know today. Introducing […]

Don't fear women. It's bad for them and bad for business

Are men really becoming afraid of women? That’s the upshot of a recent Bloomberg story about fallout from the #MeToo movement. The story described how some men on Wall Street and across financial services are avoiding women for fear that their actions will be misconstrued. The suggestion of such an approach caused an immediate and […]

Wells Fargo says it's cleaning up its mess. Regulators demand more

Wells Fargo & Co. says it’s a different bank today than it was two years ago — but it may not be different enough for regulators. CEO Tim Sloan told investors at a conference Tuesday that the bank aims “not only to meet but exceed regulatory expectations, so that we have the best risk management […]

If / Then

My friend Turney Duff did this Ted Talk that just hit the web. For those who don’t know his story, he’s the fallen angel hedge fund manager who wrote the book on mixing trading with partying, and then paying the price for it. You can watch it below, I thought it was fun and interesting… […]

Plain & Simple

I read lots of technical analysis research. A lot of it is produced by friends of mine (what’s up JC, Ari, Jon, Andy!). Some of it comes from large firms and some of it comes from independent traders. I don’t place trades based upon it but I use it inform my opinions and views. Price […]

Once The Money Is Gone Your Tolerance For BS Disappears

Some of you don’t believe me that it’s better to retire in a bear market, when all is in shambles, than in a bull market. I, for one, found it very hard to quit the money when times were good. I was always suffering from the “one more year syndrome.” Seriously, as soon as my […]

A Round Trip Through a Crowdfunded Equity Investment

[Update Prior to Publication: I first wrote this post a couple of months ago. It was written now that after several years of investing with, monitoring, and writing about RealtyShares, I was finally comfortable giving them a pretty strong recommendation. I had been round trip with four debt investments and an equity investment and the […]

Richard Neal: the new face driving retirement policy in Washington

Retirement policy will have a new face in Washington next year, and that could mean major changes to the 401(k) industry. Rep. Richard Neal, D-Mass., will become chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee when Democrats take control of the chamber from Republicans in January for the first time in eight years. Mr. Neal […]

SIFMA says Reg BI raises broker standard above investment adviser requirements

A major financial industry trade association asserted Thursday that the Securities and Exchange Commission’s investment advice reform proposal would result in brokers having to meet a higher standard of care than investment advisers. The SEC proposal revolves around the so-called Regulation Best Interest, which would require brokers to act in the best interests of the […]