LPL adds 125 advisers in third quarter

Additional brokers an improvement of both prior and year-ago quarters when the firm lost people

Oct 26, 2018 @ 1:49 pm

By Jeff Benjamin

LPL Financial added 125 advisers in the quarter that ended Sept. 30, compared with a net loss of 18 advisers in the prior quarter and a loss of three advisers in the same quarter a year ago.

In its earnings report, the company reported combined brokerage and advisory assets of $681 billion, up 0.3% from the prior quarter. Advisory assets, totaling $306.1 billion, increased by 0.6% during the quarter, while brokerage assets of $374.9 billion, were up 0.1%.

Dan Arnold, LPL's CEO, credited the growth in the adviser ranks to a renewed effort to respond to changes in the "landscape of investor demographics.

"We expect adviser practices to evolve in order to meet the market opportunity created by serving more diverse clients," he said during a conference call with market analysts after the market closed on Thursday.

"Thus, we are investing to be a destination of choice for a diversity of advisers, as exemplified this quarter by our addition of an all-woman firm and a team of Hispanic advisers," Mr. Arnold added.

Along with enhanced recruiting efforts, Mr. Arnold talked about an LPL program of pairing advisers who are new to the industry with "seasoned LPL advisers.

"This structure helps new advisers learn the profession in a hands-on environment, and it also helps existing advisers with another lever of growth and a potential succession path," he said.

Mr. Arnold added that the program will "drive the expansion of our experiment of bringing new advisors to the industry."

The company's net income increased by 84% year over year to $107 million, that translates to an earnings-per-share gain of 89% to $1.19.

LPL shares were up more than 3% in mid-day trading Friday, which compares with a 1.5% decline in the S&P 500 Index.

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