Income-First Strategy Leads Among Large Value Funds

Dave Scranton
Janeesa Hollingshead, Executive Editor, Wealth Solutions Report

Sound Income Strategies’ ETF Achieves Top 4% In Morningstar Rankings, Demonstrating Success Of Income-Focused Equity Investment Strategy

Fort Lauderdale, Florida-based RIA Sound Income Strategies announced its Sound Equity Income ETF (DIVY) ranked in the top 4% of Morningstar’s 1,229 U.S. large value funds, based on total returns as of year-end 2022. The firm has over $2 billion in assets under management and is part of Sound Income Group, a 2022 WSR Wealth Exemplar Award winner in the category of Retirement Income Solutions Provider of the Year.

The DIVY ETF, which emphasizes income generative investments, has outperformed the S&P 500 since its launch in December 2020. One of two ETFs managed by the firm, DIVY’s strategy follows the income-focused investment approach the firm deploys across its range of services.

Outperforming Benchmarks And Active Managers

“Our achievement of outperforming 95% of all active large-cap value managers and passive indices in the past two years as measured by Morningstar has exceeded our shareholder’s expectations,” said David Scranton, CEO and Founder of Sound Income Strategies. 

David J. Scranton, CEO & Founder, Sound Income Strategies

According to Morningstar, DIVY’s total return of 4% in 2022 compared to -18.11% for the S&P 500, while its 2021 return of 34.58% compared to 28.71% for the S&P 500, which placed it in the top 5% for the large-cap value category of 1,207 managers and indices. Its two-year cumulative return of 19.23% exceeded the S&P 500’s 4% by almost five times.

“We were fortunate to deliver this strong performance and positive returns during a time of market challenges,” Scranton continued. “We created DIVY three years ago from a portfolio of income-producing equities to account for challenging times, and we are pleased with its results.”

An Actively Managed Income Focus

The ETF’s success coincides with the shift among many advisors’ clients from passive investing, which typically follows an index, to actively managed investing after over a year of stagnant market performance.  

The growth of DIVY also likely reflects surging interest among advisors and clients to seek income rather than capital appreciation, fueled not only by volatile markets but also a smoldering inflation fire and the potential loss of Social Security income, as its trust fund is projected to fully deplete by 2033. 

Scranton founded Sound Income Strategies in 2014 with a focus on fee-based advisory income solutions. Helping investors generate income during retirement, the firm offers income advisory services as a third-party asset manager serving wealth management firms in addition to ETFs. 

Rollout Of New AI Program For Financial Advisors

Sound Income Group, founded in 2022, holds subsidiaries Sound Income Strategies, Retirement Income Source, which provides a franchise model to advisors providing retirement planning services, and Advisors Academy, an insurance FMO. 

Just earlier this month, Sound Income Group launched a new artificial intelligence training program for financial advisors through its Advisors Academy subsidiary.  

The program includes a course that teaches financial advisors how to incorporate artificial intelligence – including ChatGPT and other AI-enabled chatbots, into their practice. 

In addition to the course, the company is offering coaching services for financial advisors tailored to the unique needs and goals of each professional. The aim of these coaching services is to help advisors develop the necessary skills to implement AI-driven solutions and strategies that will benefit their clients and their businesses.

Janeesa Hollingshead, Executive Editor at Wealth Solutions Report, can be reached at

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