Half Year In Review: Top 10 Articles Of The First Half Of 2023

Janeesa Hollingshead, Contributing Editor, Wealth Solutions Report

Our Top 10 Articles Of The First Half Of 2023 Span Across Awards And Recognition, Expert Analysis, Conferences And More

In what feels like only a moment, the first half of an exciting and rapidly evolving year for wealth management has passed. As we provided you with the best in industry insights and expert analysis during these months, you brought our reach to new levels across our website, social media and e-blasts. Thank you, WSR community.

As the third quarter begins, we bring you a quick trip down memory lane, recapping the top 10 stories of the past two quarters. As with our annual 2022 review, we considered audience engagement, timeliness, the reputation of the firms and professionals featured, as well as the level of insight and analysis brought to you in selecting these 10 stories, presented chronologically below.

1.  Guide To Industry Conferences: Wealthtech

Matt Middleton, CEO and Co-Founder, Advisor Circle

In February, we published our inaugural Guide to Industry Conferences, covering the major Wealthtech conferences of 2023: Orion Ascent; the T3 Advisor Conference; Informa Connect’s WealthStack; Advisor Circle and Ritholtz Wealth Management’s Future Proof; and the Riskalyze Fearless Investing Summit (Riskalyze has since rebranded as Nitrogen).

With the popularity of the first in this series of data-packed guides, we continued to cover other major conferences throughout the first half for Insurance; Compliance, Governance and Regulatory; and Custodians. Watch for further installments in the second half.

2. Constant Innovation In Wealthtech – Fact Or Fiction?

Larry Roth, CEO, Wealth Solutions Report

As a seasoned industry leader, our CEO Larry Roth regularly presents in-depth views on topics of concern to the WSR community. In March, he countered the popular view that everything is proceeding smoothly in wealthtech innovation in Constant Innovation In Wealthtech – Fact Or Fiction?, calling attention to needed improvement in basic functionality. Roth presented another quarterly installment on wealthtech in June, and recently opined on the state of advisor recruitment.

3. WSR Recognizes IS 5 – Top Investment Solutions Platform Leaders

Zoë Brunson, Chief Investment Strategist, AssetMark

Also in March, we recognized the Top Investment Solutions Platform Leaders in the industry: Zoë Brunson, Chief Investment Strategist of AssetMark; Shannon Larson, SVP, Platform Management and Product Development of Advisor Group (which has since rebranded as Osaic); Deron McCoy, Chief Investment Officer at Signature Estate & Investment Advisors (SEIA); Rob Pettman, EVP, Wealth Management Solutions at LPL Financial; and Kerry Pierce, Managing Director, Head of Investment Solutions at Cetera Financial Group.

The IS 5 is one of several recognitions of industry excellence during the first half of 2023. Others included the top FA recruiting firms, top CFOs, top marketing and communications firms and top CMOs. WSR will honor achievement in other industry segments in the second half.

4. WSR Pathfinder Awards – Top Women Industry Leaders Of 2023

In addition to calling out industry excellence through top lists such as the IS 5, WSR’s Pathfinder Awards, now well into the second year, honor trailblazing executives of underrepresented backgrounds and organizations that generate progress for underrepresented communities. In March, which is Women’s History Month, we awarded 15 executives as the top women leaders in wealth management, as well as the Women’s History Month Organization of the Year, The American College Center for Women in Financial Services.

We also honored outstanding advisors, professionals, executives and organizations during Black History Month and AAPI Heritage Month as part of the Pathfinder Awards series. In October, we will name the Top Hispanic Industry Leaders of 2023 during National Hispanic Heritage Month.

5. Alts Strategy In The Shadow Of Silicon Valley Bank

Andrew Krei, Co-CIO, Crescent Grove Advisors

Years from now, the banking crisis precipitated by the failure of Silicon Valley Bank will stand out as one of the key memorable events of the first half of 2023. We covered multiple aspects of this story, including a popular interview with Andrew Krei, Co-CIO of Crescent Grove Advisors, in which Krei analyzed and predicted the effects of this crisis, including how it affects alts investing.

6. Does The Schwab Migration Herald A Sea Change In Custody?

Doug Fritz, Co-Founder & CEO, F2 Strategy

Another event that will hold a firm place in our 2023 memories is the migration of advisors using TD Ameritrade’s custodial platform to Charles Schwab. Since this represents significant consolidation in wealth management custodial platforms, their merger alters the landscape for the entire industry, not just those directly involved in the migration.

We spoke to Doug Fritz, Co-Founder and CEO of F2 Strategy, and Greg Thornhill, Head of Operations at niche custodian Entrustody, on the custodial space post-migration, the migration process, the competitive strengths of both large and niche players, digital account opening and the influence of wirehouse breakaways in Does The Schwab Migration Herald A Sea Change In Custody?

7. Retirement Savers Need More Help Managing Their 401(k)s

David Goldman, Chief Business Officer, Pontera

Clients often hold assets away from their advisors, especially in their 401(k)s, trying to manage their assets themselves. In fact, according to David Goldman, Chief Business Officer of Pontera, often investors not only choose to DIY their investments, but don’t even know where to reach out for help. In his April guest editorial, Retirement Savers Need More Help Managing Their 401(k)s, Goldman analyzes these problems and offers solutions for advisors.

8. Morningstar Investment Conference 2023: Top 5 Takeaways

WSR Managing Editor Chris Latham with Morningstar’s “Mo”

Our Managing Editor, Chris Latham, attended the Morningstar Investment Conference in Chicago in May, presenting the top five takeaways from the conference for readers: Morningstar’s reveal of its AI personality named “Mo”; Derek Notman, the Founder and CEO of Couplr and Intrepid Wealth Partners, described how he maintains a 100% virtual business book; Clark Capital’s Divisional Sales Manager, Rob Schlegel, explained outsourcing portfolio strategies; NYU Stern Professor Aswath Damodaran explained why he’s skeptical of ESG; and Morningstar Wealth’s Marta Norton, Chief Investment Officer, Americas, and Michael Laughlin, Head of Portfolio Specialist Team, discussed investing in volatile markets.

9. Connelly On Success And The Uniqueness Of Financial Services

Jennifer Connelly, Founder & CEO, JConnelly

As mentioned above, WSR honors firms and individuals who demonstrate excellence across many spaces of wealth management. In May, we interviewed Jennifer Connelly, Founder and CEO of JConnelly, one of the IMAGE 10: Top 10 Wealth Management Marketing & Communications Agencies, on strategies for success, the uniqueness of marketing and communications in wealth management and advice for career entrants.

We concurrently interviewed two other founders and CEOs of IMAGE 10 honorees: The Rudin Group’s April Rudin and Haven Tower Group’s Joseph Kuo.

10. Are IBD And RIA Channels Converging?

Andy Kalbaugh, Expert Columnist on Leaders & Entrepreneurs, Wealth Solutions Report

In June, Andy Kalbaugh, our Expert Columnist on Leaders & Entrepreneurs, wrote an article detailing a trend of recent years – the convergence of IBD and RIA channels. Kalbaugh outlines the industry and regulatory shifts behind this convergence, with commentary from Wayne Bloom, CEO of Commonwealth Financial Network; Stephen Langlois, President of Kestra Financial; Gary Carrai, Executive Vice President of Strategy, Business Lines at LPL Financial; and Tarah Williams, President and COO of Prospera Financial.

Janeesa Hollingshead, Contributing Editor at Wealth Solutions Report, can be reached at editor@wealthsolutionsreport.com.

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