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Citigroup plans to ramp up its clearing presence

November 22, 2004

NEW YORK - Citigroup Inc., the world's largest financial services company, is looking to jump further into the clearing business. The company will be competing with the three industry leaders, Pershing LLC/ BNY Clearing Services of Jersey City,...

High fund fees may hurt small rollover IRAs

November 22, 2004

CHICAGO - Because of excessive management and administration fees, some pension plan consultants are sounding an alarm about the possible erosion of small individual retirement accounts rolled out of 401(k) plans. They argue that financial advisers...

Schwab is taking heat over 'Merrill Lynch rule'

November 22, 2004

SAN FRANCISCO - Charles Schwab & Co. Inc. is taking heat from some of its most loyal advisers for its position on the so-called Merrill Lynch rule. In a Sept. 22 letter to the Securities and Exchange Commission, the San Francisco-based discount...

SEC set to vote broker-dealer-exemption rule

November 22, 2004

WASHINGTON - Despite a lawsuit by financial planners, the Securities and Exchange Commission may soon finalize a rule proposal allowing broker-dealers who charge asset-based fees to be exempt from being regulated as investment advisers. Staff...

Shift by brokers, advisers hits money funds

November 15, 2004

DETROIT - A "quiet revolution" in the way brokers and advisers manage their clients' cash balances could represent the beginning of the end for money market mutual funds, according to a new study of cash management practices in the financial...

Brokers win battle in block transfer war

November 15, 2004

NEW YORK - Score a qualified victory for independent broker-dealers. Backing away from an earlier stance, NASD last Monday said that it will allow broker-dealers to continue the block transfers of mutual funds and variable annuities if clients'...

Chuck Schwab impresses some advisers at IMPACT

November 15, 2004

PHILADELPHIA - Three months after taking the reins back at his company, Charles R. Schwab faced his toughest test. He had to convince independent advisers who represent a very profitable $316 billion in the hands of Charles Schwab Corp. of San...

Stifel makes buy

November 8, 2004

NEW YORK - Stifel Nicolaus & Co. Inc. of St. Louis said last month that it had purchased PowellJohnson Inc. of Nashville, Tenn. Terms of the deal weren't disclosed. PowellJohnson was short lived, opening in the middle of the market downturn...

AmEx closes door on brokers making move

November 8, 2004

NEW YORK - American Express Financial Advisors Inc. of Minneapolis is closing the door on brokers looking to move to its independent-broker-dealer affiliate, Securities America Advisors Inc. of Omaha, Neb. After almost five years and a much-ballyhooed...

Broker, in NASD sights, to end private offering

November 1, 2004

NEW YORK - GunnAllen Financial Inc., one of the fastest-growing independent-contractor broker-dealers since 2002, will close out a private placement this month that gives its affiliated brokers an eye-catching 7% sales commission for each of...

Advisers selling DC plans must improve fee disclosure

November 1, 2004

SAN FRANCISCO - Advisers who sell defined contribution plans need to be proactive in disclosing fees to plan sponsors, including how much they're being compensated, said the U.S. Department of Labor's chief enforcement officer for employee retirement...

NASD tries to head off problems for brokers

October 25, 2004

PALM SPRINGS, Calif. - NASD is working to nip problems in the bud for its broker-dealer members. Speaking at the NASD fall securities conference here in mid- October, NASD vice chairman Mary L. Schapiro called the recent intensity of regulation...

Broker execs mull creating SRO

October 25, 2004

NEW YORK - Saying they are fed up with NASD's aggressive regulatory stance, some broker-dealer executives are discussing breaking away from their present self-regulatory organization and creating a new industry group. And the executives are...

Fiduciary center's designation questioned as more brokers get it

October 25, 2004

CHICAGO - Donald Trone, co-founder and director of the Center for Fiduciary Studies in Sewickley, Pa., is roundly praised for his work spreading the gospel of fiduciary practices. But concerns have surfaced that by marketing the center's training...

NASD probing sales of realty investments

October 25, 2004

NEW YORK - At a time when regulators are conducting wide-ranging investigations into the sales practices of broker-dealers, NASD is turning its attention to real estate, the hottest market since stocks started their descent in 2000. According...

Clients must OK block transfers

October 18, 2004

NEW YORK - In a move likely to slow the recruitment of independent-contractor registered representatives, NASD announced last week that registered reps and firms must get clients to sign off on all block transfers of mutual funds and variable...

Genworth Financial seeks CEO for its broker-dealer subsidiary

October 11, 2004

NEW YORK - On the heels of the year's largest initial public offering, Genworth Financial Corp. is looking to raise the profile of its broker-dealer, Terra Securities Corp. Genworth Financial, the Richmond, Va.-based insurance business that...

529s a hot topic in Washingon

October 11, 2004

WASHINGTON - Regulators investigating Section 529 plans for unsuitable sales, and one of the financial services industry's severest critics, agree with brokers' contention that they are put between a rock and a hard place with sales of the popular...

Hundreds of planners write off Merrill rule

October 4, 2004

WASHINGTON - Hundreds of financial planners have written to the Securities and Exchange Commission urging the withdrawal of the so-called Merrill Lynch rule, or demanding at least better disclosure by brokers. The financial planners appear to...

Litman's test: Get high rollers to aim lower

October 4, 2004

SAN FRANCISCO - An investment advice service for high-end fee-only financial advisers is trying to lure its big fish downstream. The bait: turnkey mutual fund wraps with a $50,000 minimum. Litman/Gregory Asset Management LLC of Larkspur, Calif.,...

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