Wealth Magnets: Assets Under Management at Top CPA Financial Planners

Accounting Today recently released their annual report on Wealth Magnets: Top Firms by Assets Under Management. Each year, Accounting Today surveys the leading CPA financial planners, supplemented by data from the Audit Analytics Registered Investment Advisor database, and asks about the most pressing issues faced by the industry.

In this edition, the two issues cited most by the surveyed firms were a shortage of people and an excess of competition. According to Daniel Hood, editor in chief at Accounting Today and author of the report, the combination of an increased demand for accounting services coupled with more competition from other types of sources – especially low-cost online options – has put a lot of pressure on CPA financial planners. As a result, “fees for asset under management are being challenged,” noted Alan Rothstein, vice predisident at Asset Strategies, Inc.

The report also mentioned a couple of other challenges faced by the industry, from the ever-present tangle of tax regulations to the current problem of planning for college debt. We recommend reading the whole report, which is available in the August issue of Accounting Today. Especially interesting is the list of the Top 100 Wealth Magnets, including “The Billion Dollar Club” and “The Rising Stars”.

We thought we would add some of our own insights here. We compiled a list of Registered Investment Advisors who offer both Financial Planning Services and Accounting Services. That gave us a population of well over 1,000 unique investment advisors to draw from, with assets under management ranging from the low six figures to more than $130 billion.

Wealth Magnets Table 1

It’s little surprise that California tops the list, followed by New York and Texas. This is consistent with the geographic review of RIAs we did back in February. One thing that stands out in this list is the Assets Under Management (“AUM”) held by wealth magnets located in Pennsylvania, which by average and median are far beyond the AUM held by wealth magnets in other states. This is mainly driven by the presence of SEI Investments, which has about 50% more assets under management than the next largest wealth magnet in our list.

Audit Analytics provides an online database of all Registered Investment Advisors (RIAs), Private Funds, and their independent Auditors. For additional information, please e-mail info@auditanalytics.com, call (508) 476-7007 or fill out this request form. You can also see our other blog posts on these topics for more insights from Audit Analytics.