A client retention level of 97% helped to drive client referrals and to produce record levels of AUM and revenues last year, according to study of 1,025 independent RIAs by Schwab.

“The RIAs are staying true to their mission, they are doing their best for their clients and this earns them the loyalty of their clients,” says Jon Beatty, senior vice president, sales and relationship management, Schwab Advisor Services. He adds that the fee-based RIA business model is a significant factor: “With a payment system that is aligned with the investors’ goals, you have a recipe for success.”

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