The Advisory Career

Accelerated Momentum in Advisors Turning Independent

Schwab: Seventy-Five percent Increase in new independent RIA firms since 2012

November 02, 2017 — SAN FRANCISCO–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Schwab Advisor Services today released its analysis of 2016 Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) registration data, which indicates that the number of advisors who entered the independent space – as registered investment advisors (RIAs) – showed strong momentum.

According to the data, new registrations at the SEC level grew by 75 percent since 2012, from 114 new RIA firms to 199 new firms in 2016. Firms established in 2016 represent nearly $55 billion in assets under management (AUM).

“We believe passionately in the independent model and the value it delivers to advisors and their clients,” said Jonathan Beatty, senior vice president and head of sales and relationship management. “As increasing numbers of advisors choose this model, we are committed to providing the education, resources, and ongoing partnership to help them make a successful and sustainable transition.”

Firms of all sizes are being drawn to independence, but large firms are increasingly prominent in fueling the movement. The percentage of firms turning independent with at least $300 million in AUM has doubled since 2013. In addition, the firms with over $300 million in AUM managed a total of $35 billion in AUM in 2016, a 15 percent increase over the previous year.

Beatty shared the analysis in the lead-up to Schwab IMPACT®, the largest and longest-running annual gathering of independent advisors in the nation, where many advisors attend to evaluate the merits of the independent model.

A showcase for independence

At IMPACT this year, Schwab will host a record number of advisors who are exploring the independent model. These individuals participate in a dedicated session track that addresses specific questions and considerations about moving to independence.

In addition, they and the more than 1,750 current Schwab Advisor Services clients in attendance, will hear from a line-up of keynote speakers and explore the full ecosystem that Schwab brings to bear to champion and support independent advisors’ success.

Firms of all sizes are being drawn to independence, but large firms are increasingly prominent in fueling the movement

“We’ve been champions of the independent model for 30 years. The momentum in this industry speaks to the fact that more and more advisors are seeking the flexibility to create the kinds of firms investors are seeking,” said Beatty. “We are proud to be part of the momentum and to support advisors at every step along their journey.”

Additional resources for advisors who are considering independence

In addition to offering focused sessions at IMPACT for advisors who are exploring the independent model, Schwab provides an array of online resources and educational materials, such as the RIA Roadmap, an Economic Discovery tool, and case studies of advisors who have successfully moved to the independent model.




About the SEC registration data
Schwab Advisor Services collected and analyzed RIA registration data for 2016 from SEC registration filings. Collectively, the data includes 199 firms and represents approximately $55 billion in AUM. To be included in the analysis, firms must have been established in 2016. More details can be found in the full report.
About Charles Schwab
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