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This is a common question with what you may find to be an uncommon answer. Financial Advisors can generally be divided into two categories: those who are fiduciaries and those who are not. The fraternity of fiduciary financial advisors has far more in common than what may distinguish its members. Therefore, these are the attributes of a Registered Investment Advisor firm. 1) Fiduciary duty to clients, 2) Transparency, 3) Fee only, no commission, 4) Independence, 5) Objectivity, 6) Experience, 7) Education and Credentials, 8) And in our case, longevity. PIM has been serving clients for over 37 years.
A fee-only financial advisor derives revenue as a percentage of its clients' assets under management. Fee-only financial advisors derive no revenue from transactions or commissions. Fee-only is considered the best way to align the interests of the advisor firm and its clients.
The way to build and maintain wealth in the investment markets is to participate, all the time. Market timing does not provide consistent results, and even one serious mistake can be negatively life-changing. Diversification among a mix of low-correlated global asset classes lowers overall portfolio risk while presenting the opportunity for excess returns, in line with stated long-term goals.
Most simply stated, a Fiduciary is ethically and legally obligated to always act in their clients' best interests.
PIM does not have a formal investment minimum. However, we do have an annual fee minimum of $1,000. Our view is that paying more than 1% in investment management fees is not advisable the vast majority of the time. Therefore, by default, one could assume that we have an informal investment minimum of $100,000.
PIM clients' assets are held in one of three qualified custodians. For certain education system and medical retirement plan participants, assets are held by Fidelity Investments. For other education system faculty and staff, assets may be held in custody at TIAA. All non-retirement plan accounts, as well as other retirement accounts, trust accounts and other types of accounts are held in custody at Charles Schwab & Co.