What is a Registered Investment Adviser—broker/dealer?
A Registered Investment Adviser–broker/dealer is a company that a registered investment professional is required to affiliate with in order to buy and sell investment products on behalf of investors. The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) delegates the supervision of financial advisors to the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). FINRA, in turn, requires us to choose a broker/dealer to partner with on your behalf.
Why Commonwealth Financial Network®?
As the nation’s largest privately held independent Registered Investment Adviser–independent broker/dealer with $1.425 billion in annual revenues*, Commonwealth has the scale, stability, and resources to help us deliver the solutions our clients need. With a staff of approximately 900, Commonwealth helps approximately 1,950 independent advisors* serve their clients and manage total account assets of approximately $161 billion.*
The fact that we’ve chosen to work with Commonwealth means that our firm remains independent and free to act in your best interest, without any pressure to promote proprietary products or strategies. It’s a model that differs from that of some other, larger financial firms whose financial representatives are accountable not just to their clients, but also to the parent company that employs them.
Commonwealth is also independently owned and managed, which means the firm retains the freedom to allocate resources where they’re needed and to act in the best interests of its financial advisors and their clients—not shareholders.
How Commonwealth helps us help you
Commonwealth ranks "#1 in Independent Advisor Satisfaction Among Financial Investment Firms" in the J.D. Power 2019 Financial Advisor Satisfaction Study.** But it's what that achievement means for our clients—on a daily basis—that makes the difference.
Investment choice. Commonwealth offers us robust, independent market research and a wide universe of third-party investment options—from individual stocks and bonds to mutual funds, exchange-traded funds, alternative investments, managed accounts, and retirement plans. Our access to Commonwealth’s expert, impartial guidance and a diverse range of products helps ensure that we remain free to operate in your best interest and to make recommendations based on your financial objectives, personal investment style, and risk tolerance.
Service. The firm's advisor-to-staff ratio is one of the best in the industry. This means staff members answer our calls promptly, execute transactions quickly and accurately, and, in general, offer our firm the same first-class treatment we strive to give you.
Technology. Commonwealth's technology platform is a critical component in our ability to provide you with first-class service and support. Its integrated web-based systems allow us to more efficiently manage your portfolio and your overall financial picture.
Security. Commonwealth is second to none in its commitment to safeguarding your privacy and ensuring that your investment data remains secure. From encryption standards to disaster recovery plans and other measures the firm employs, we are confident that the information our clients entrust us with will remain secure.
Committed to helping those in need
Commonwealth’s commitment to service does not end with its advisors and their clients. For more than three decades, the firm has been dedicated to serving the communities where its employees and affiliated advisors work, live, and visit. Commonwealth Cares, a 501(c)(3) charity, was formed in 2010 to maximize the impact of those efforts. The foundation’s mission is to provide contributions of time, talent, and financial support to a wide range of philanthropic efforts aimed at relieving human suffering, promoting social and economic growth, and sustaining and protecting our planet’s resources. That kind of dedication to the greater good is just one more reason we’re proud to be affiliated with Commonwealth.
If you'd like to know more
We'd be glad to talk with you further or answer any questions you may have about our affiliation with Commonwealth. Please feel free to give us a call.
*As of 12/31/18
**Commonwealth Financial Network® received the highest score in the independent advisor segment of the J.D. Power 2010, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2018, and 2019 Financial Advisor Satisfaction Studies of customers’ satisfaction among financial advisors. Visit jdpower.com/awards.
Outstanding Service and Security for Your Accounts
As part of our efort to provide you with quality service, our broker-dealer has an agreement with National FInancial Services, LLC by which National Financial Services, LLC provides trade execution, clearing and other realted services for your brokerage account.
Fidelity Clearing & Custody Solutions® (FCCS)1 provides clearing, custody, and other brokerage services to Commonwealth Financial Network® through National Financial Services LLC (NFS)2, its clearing firm. As such, NFS provides trade execution, clearing, custody, and other related services for Commonwealth’s customers’ brokerage accounts. As registered broker/dealers, both Commonwealth and NFS are subject to the rules and regulations of the SEC, FINRA, and any other exchanges either firm is a member of, as well as of the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board. Each of these regulatory organizations has certain rules and regulations regarding the safeguarding of customer assets, including, but not limited to, keeping accurate books and records, net capital requirements, and the Customer Protection Rule.
1 Fidelity Clearing & Custody Solutions® (FCCS) is an independent company, unaffiliated with Commonwealth. FCCS is a service provider to Commonwealth and provides clearing, custody, and other brokerage services to Commonwealth through National Financial Services LLC (NFS), member NYSE, SIPC. eReview #815986.1.0
2 These statements equally apply to Commonwealth’s relationship with Pershing LLC, which provides clearing services on a minimal number of customer accounts.
How Your Assets are Protected
Investmark is a member of the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC). Additionally, our broker-dealer, Commonwealth, and NFS are also both members. The SIPC was created in 1970 to protect customers of member broker-dealer firms in case of broker-dealer liquidation.
“Excess of SIPC” Coverage
In addition to SIPC protection, NFS provides for brokerage accounts additional “excess of SIPC” coverage through Lloyd’s of London, together with other insurers.1 The excess of SIPC coverage will be used only when SIPC coverage is exhausted. Like SIPC protection, excess of SIPC protection does not cover investment losses in customer accounts due to market fluctuation. It also does not cover other claims for losses incurred while broker-dealers remain in business. Total aggregate excess of SIPC coverage available through NFS’s excess of SIPC policy is $1 billion. Within NFS’s excess of SIPC coverage, there is no per-account dollar limit on coverage of securities, but there is a per-account limit of $1.9 million on coverage of cash. This is the maximum excess of SIPC protection currently available in the brokerage industry.
1 Fidelity’s “excess of SIPC” insurance is provided by Lloyd’s of London together with Axis Specialty Europe Ltd., Markel International
Insurance Company, XL Specialty Insurance Company, and Munich Reinsurance Co.