• Good News: Financial Planning Activity Increasing in Banks and Credit Unions

    Much has been written about the role of financial planning in the modern investment services firm, including in our three-part series on the subject: The New Importance of Financial Planning. So how has the industry responded? Are advisors preparing more plans than they did previously?This simple question is difficult to answer, because despite the growing importance of financial planning, a majority of firms are unable to report the number of plans their advisors prepared for clients the previo...  Read More...

  • Fiduciary Rule: From Doom and Gloom to Thoughtful Change

    Since the Department of Labor's fiduciary standard for qualified retirement accounts was first announced, banks have "made some thoughtful changes to their compensation plans," said Peter Bielan, principal of Kehrer Bielan Research & Consulting during his recent appearance on Bank Investment Consultant's podcasts. Bielan spoke with BIC editor Lee Conrad to reflect on the changes that have occurred to advisor compensation in response to the rule."When the rule was first...  Read More...

  • Let's Play Jeopardy: What Are Junior Brokers?

    Bank Brokerage Execs See Associate Advisors as the AnswerParticipants seemed to be channeling Jeopardy as they explained how they were solving various business challenges during the Spring Tuneup meeting of the Kehrer Bielan study group of executives who manage investment services in banks and credit unions.How to ween advisors away from holding on to too many clients?  Give some of the clients to less experienced advisors who are mentored by a senior advisor.How to grow the advisor sales f...  Read More...

  • Catch and Release: Bank Brokerage Firms Struggle to Recruit and Retain Sufficient Numbers of Advisors

    Investment Services Executives Discuss Ways to Improve OnboardingThe number of financial advisors working in banks and credit unions declined by 1.1% in 2016, even as the opportunity in investment services for financial institutions continues to grow, suggesting that the industry is ill-prepared to take advantage of the opportunity. That was one of the key findings shared at Kehrer Bielan's semi-annual study group for executives who manage investment services businesses inside financial inst...  Read More...

  • More Customers Can Invest Where They Bank Than Ever Before

    The number of banks offering investment services has declined almost every year for the past several years. But the banking industry has been consolidating even faster. As a result, the share of banks offering investment services has increased substantially.According to FDIC Call Report data, 1,656 US retail banks report investment fee income, down 29% since 2007.   Read More...

  • More Members Can Invest with Their CU Than Ever Before

    The number of credit unions offering investment services has remained essentially flat for the past several years. But the credit union industry has been consolidating even faster. As a result, the share of credit unions offering investment services has increased substantially.955 credit unions partner with the 11 largest 3rd party broker dealers, about the same number reported in 2007.   Read More...

  • Amid DoL Uncertainty, Bank Execs Look to Overhaul Advisor Comp

    Inauguration Day is six weeks away, and plenty of uncertainty remains surrounding what action, if any, the incoming administration will take on the Department of Labor's Fiduciary Rule for qualified retirement accounts. But dramatic changes to financial advisor compensation appear likely to occur regardless of what happens to the Rule. Why?   Read More...

  • Think Trump Will Scrap the DoL Rule? Bank Execs Disagree

    In the ten days since Donald J. Trump became the president-elect, we have heard hopeful speculation in boardrooms and in the media that the new administration will throw out the Department of Labor's Fiduciary Rule for qualified retirement accounts, set to go into effect on April 10, saving our industry from adapting to perhaps the largest regulatory change it has ever faced.But the executives who run the investment services businesses in banks and credit unions aren't buying the hype.A ...  Read More...

  • Setting Revenue Expectations for Next Year

    When we convened our semi-annual study group of top bank brokerage executives in Chapel Hill last month, one topic immediately emerged as being a top concern for the group – they expect investment services revenue to decline in 2017, but bank management actually expects revenue to grow.The gap in expectations is enormous. The brokerage executives project their firm's revenue to fall 7% to 20% next year due to the disruptions caused by the implementation of the Department of Labor's...  Read More...

  • Advisors' Life Production Up 27% since 2010 in Banks and Credit Unions

    Strong Foundation for Growth under the DoL Fiduciary StandardIn our discussions about DoL readiness with top executives responsible for investment services in financial institutions, it is clear that they plan to focus more on life insurance sales to bolster an expected decline in revenue from commission transactions and lower fees on advisory accounts.  But many are surprised to learn that banks and credit unions have made steady progress in growing their life insurance sales over the past...  Read More...

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