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To say that 2016 wasn't the best year for IBD is an understatement. Revenue for the country’s largest independent broker-dealers fell by more than 2% from 2015 — a greater decline than the 1.38% overall drop seen at the end of the Great Recession — in a year with strong markets.

But the data tracked by Financial Planning’s exclusive annual FP50 survey charts a clear path forward: A greater emphasis than ever on fee income. The firms best positioned to take advantage of this trend may not be the leaders on this year's ranking.

For the moment, however, here are the IBDs which racked up the highest total revenue across their fee, commission and other lines of business.

For more in-depth coverage, please see FP50: The case for optimism for the nation’s largest independent broker-dealers. p/:0�`