RIA Leaders 2020: Top 15 firms by number of advisors

RIA Leaders 2020

Most of the largest fee-only RIAs would likely qualify as small businesses. At least terms in staffing.

Just three RIAs out of 2,225 nationwide considered for the 2020 RIA Leaders ranking have more than 100 advisors.

The listing of the top 15 by the number of investment adviser representatives includes one firm from Manhattan, Kansas, but none from New York City, according to RIA Leaders data, which was compiled by Financial Planning and compliance consultant RIA in a Box.

Our RIA Leaders list includes some of the best known RIAs, such as Mercer Advisors, Personal Capital, Savant Wealth Management, AdvicePeriod and Abacus Wealth Partners. The criteria required that firms state on their Form ADV that they don’t take commissions or retain broker-dealer affiliations, along with serving at least 50% individual or high-net-worth clients.

All but one of the top 15 have more than $1 billion in assets under management, but only five of them have more than 100 employees. Firms with 50 or fewer non-clerical employees represent 88% of the nearly 13,000 SEC-registered RIAs, and 57% have 10 or fewer, according to the 2019 Evolution Revolution report.

The strict criteria provides a glimpse into firms and practices that specifically provide financial planning services to retail clients on a fee-only basis. The top 15 by the largest number of advisors have only 1,187 IARs — a fraction of those affiliated with the largest wealth managers — but manage a combined $95.7 billion in AUM.

To see the rankings, scroll down. For the top 15 firms in the RIA Leaders rankings based on AUM, click here. To read the 2020 RIA Leaders cover story, “High touch, high tech,” follow this link.

Very important note: Rankings are based on the number of investment adviser representatives listed on SEC Form ADV as of May 1, 2020. RIA in a Box gathered the data from the SEC’s public database.

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15. The Mather Group
Headquarters: Chicago

Advisors: 40

AUM: $3,684,521,843

Employees: 72

Individual and HNW clients: 1,544
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14. Balasa Dinverno Foltz
Headquarters: Itasca, Illinois

Advisors: 42

AUM: $4,595,063,036

Employees: 45

Individual and HNW clients: 1,283

CI Financial acquired BDF in September.
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13. Garrett Investment Advisors
Headquarters: Manhattan, Kansas

Advisors: 43

AUM: $273,385,087

Employees: 45

Individual and HNW clients: 390
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12. Hamilton Capital
Headquarters: Columbus, Ohio

Advisors: 44

AUM: $2,813,696,204

Employees: 58

Individual and HNW clients: 2,068
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11. Abacus Wealth Partners
Headquarters: Santa Monica, California

Advisors: 48

AUM: $2,725,664,558

Employees: 64

Individual and HNW clients: 1,536
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10. Valeo Financial Advisors
Headquarters: Indianapolis

Advisors: 53

AUM: $4,922,455,400

Employees: 62

Individual and HNW clients: 1,662
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9. Sound Income Strategies
Headquarters: Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Advisors: 54

AUM: $1,172,605,094

Employees: 54

Individual and HNW clients: 6,666
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7. (tie) AdvicePeriod
Headquarters: Los Angeles

Advisors: 56

AUM: $3,467,735,678

Employees: 78

Individual and HNW clients: 912
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7. (tie) Ballentine Partners
Headquarters: Waltham, Massachusetts

Advisors: 56

AUM: $7,927,996,955

Employees: 79

Individual and HNW clients: 231
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6. Dynamic Wealth Advisors
Headquarters: Phoenix

Advisors: 61

AUM: $2,116,729,194

Employees: 89

Individual and HNW clients: 2,998
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5. EP Wealth Advisors
Headquarters: Torrance, California

Advisors: 62

AUM: $6,930,000,000

Employees: 160

Individual and HNW clients: 3,700
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4. Savant Wealth Management
Headquarters: Rockford, Illinois

Advisors: 79

AUM: $6,688,128,321

Employees: 174

Individual and HNW clients: 4,935

*Savant Capital Management rebranded to Savant Wealth Management in August.
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3. Moneta Group Investment Advisors
Headquarters: St. Louis

Advisors: 120

AUM: $20,257,468,937

Employees: 300

Individual and HNW clients: 4,364
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2. Personal Capital Advisors Corporation
Headquarters: San Francisco

Advisors: 164

AUM: $12,240,728,055

Employees: 247

Individual and HNW clients: 22,661

*Empower Retirement acquired Personal Capital in August.
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1. Mercer Global Advisors
Headquarters: Denver

Advisors: 265

AUM: $15,848,965,584

Employees: 403

Individual and HNW clients: 9,395
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