Displaying items by tag: independence
Going independent is one of the biggest decisions an advisor will ever make. Moving from being an employee to running your own business is a huge decision. Even simply changing firms once already independent is a major one. There are a thousand considerations beyond just the obvious—branding, client retention, compensation—and advisors need incredible support when making these decisions and even well past the initial integration with a new firm.
Momentum Independent Network focuses on helping advisors with a seamless move. Instead of focusing on “transition”, momentum makes it a smooth evolution, taking a lot of the anxiety out of switching firms. We provide custom tailored support, personalized marketing consultation, business development road-mapping, and full supervision and compliance, among many other included services, such as insurance. Momentum also provides firm-specific platform and technology training so that your team can be up-to-speed in no time.
Your clients will feel how simple the transition is as well, with Momentum offering a seamless and compliant client paperwork process. And because Momentum is affiliated with HilltopSecurities—a leading municipal investment bank and one of the nation’s largest clearing firms*—your clients will benefit from superior execution, market research and insights, and a robust trading platform.
*As of Aug. 17, 2019. Based on number of broker-dealer clients. Investment News.
Going independent is a huge choice. Not only do you have client risk, income risk etc, but one of the big underappreciated challenges is simply getting paid. Once you are truly running your own business, cash flow on a consistent basis is absolutely critical, which is why you need to have flexible and reliable billing software which can help you collect fees in a compliant way.
FINSUM: You need to have your tech stack solid as rock when going independent and collecting payment in a compliant way is beyond critical. Make sure to investigate the options!
When Schwab announced its acquisition of TD Ameritrade in November 2019, there was a big and sustained surge of consternation among RIAs. TDA had long been known as specializing in RIAs, especially on the smaller end of the spectrum. Schwab had exactly the opposite reputation. That has left a general void for the smaller advisor looking to go independent for the first time. However, Goldman is apparently ramping up its new custody unit and clearing platform for RIAs. The move is still in its early stages, but the firm is hiring several executives to lead the charge and seems to be aiming to compete with Schwab, Fidelity, BNY Mellon etc.
FINSUM: Advisors may recall that Goldman acquired United Capital in 2019. United was an RIA consolidator, so this seems like a natural step for the bank. In our view, it would be great for the industry to have more competition on the custodial front.
There is a very large, but little-discussed issue when going independent. When you move from being an employee advisor to an independent, your health insurance situation can be difficult. Not only is there the issue of keeping your health insurance intact immediately following your departure, but you also need to establish a significant health insurance plan with an insurer that can support your current and future employees. So it is good news to hear that the Financial Services Institute has launched a new program aimed at helping advisors with this transition. Not only will the FSI help with transitioning, but they can also provide cost savings.
FINSUM: This seems like a very good idea. This is an issue for everyone transitioning to owning a small business, not just advisors. Learn more here
Stifel is a well-regarded firm in our industry. However, one characteristic of it that doesn’t work for all brokers is that they have an employee model. This runs counter to many of the independents with whom Stifel often gets grouped. Well, that looks like it is about to change as the firm has just hired a leading executive away from Wells FiNet in order to grow Stifel’s independent side, which currently stands at only 90 advisors, or only 4% of their total advisors. The firm is rebranding its independent arm to Stifel Independent Advisors and is looking to recruit new advisors to join.
FINSUM: This seems long overdue in our eyes. Stifel is a great brand and there is untapped interest for advisors to join them as independents.