The rules for Investment Advisor magazine’s annual Broker-Dealers of the Year readers’ poll remained the same in our 22nd annual contest. Only producing representatives of the independent broker-dealers that appeared in our June 2012 Broker-Dealer Reference Guide were eligible to vote in online balloting on AdvisorOne.com from June 1, 2012 through July 1, 2012.

Each voter was vetted by Investment Advisor editorial staff to ensure compliance with the “one person, one vote” principle, and that each voter was, in fact, registered with FINRA as an independent contractor registered representative of the broker-dealer for which they voted.

In voting overseen each year since 1991 by Investment Advisor’s editorial staff, credentialed voters are asked to rate their own broker/dealers in 15 different categories; those B/Ds that receive the highest average rating from their reps are named Broker/Dealers of the Year in four divisions. To view complete rules of the contest, please click here.

This year there was a total 5,290 valid votes from 44 different broker-dealers. Those BDs that received the highest average rating from their own reps were deemed Broker-Dealers of the Year in four different divisions based on the number of reps. This ensured the BDs in each division competed against similar-sized rivals.

Below is the order of finish within each category for the 2012 Broker-Dealers of the Year balloting.

2012 Broker-Dealers of the Year

Division I: Prospera Financial
Division II: WRP Investments
Division III: NEXT Financial
Division IV: Cambridge Investment Research

2012 Second Place Winners

Division I: Harbour Investments Inc.
Division II: Geneos Wealth Management
Division III: Sigma Financial Corp.
Division IV: SagePoint Financial

2012 Third Place Winners

Division I: Century Securities
Division II: The Investment Center
Division III: Capital Financial Group / H. Beck
Division IV: NFP Securities

Read about the winners of the 2012 Broker-Dealers of the Year.