June 1, 2006

To RIA or IAR?

The latest IA Poll indicates that's the big question

With apologies Mr. Shakespeare, the question we asked advisors in the May IA Poll was, "If you are a broker/dealer representative who provides investment advisory services, what is the best way to do so?" Readers who responded prefer--by a margin of more than two-to-one--to act as an IAR under their broker/dealers corporate investment advisor. While 59% say they provide investment advice as IARs under their B/Ds corporate RIA, 28% use their own RIA firm. That makes some sense when you factor in the kinds of administrative, compliance, and platforms support that many B/Ds provide to advisors who use the corporate RIA, (for more the various ways B/Ds work with dually-registered advisors, see Stretched in the June issue of Investment Advisor magazine or online here). A few registered representatives, 3%, say they no longer provide investment advisory services, and twice that number, 6%, of RIA owners have dropped their NASD licenses. Four percent of respondents answered "Other" but did not specify what their method for providing advice is.

The new IA Poll, which can be found on the front page of the IA Web site at www.investmentadvisor.com, asks: "What investments are you suggesting to clients whose primary goal is a steady income stream?" As always we encourage your participation.

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