It had a goal to recruit 300-400 new advisors during 2015… but finished the year with just an extra 18 on board.
That was the result of LPL Financial’s recruitment drive after a difficult fourth quarter saw it shed 19 net new advisors. This meant it ended the year with 14,054 advisors – up from 14,036 at the end of 2014.
However, CEO Mark Casady was not frustrated by the results claiming that most of those who left the company were actually poor performers. In a call with investors he commented that there was an “elevated departure” of “low-producing advisors” during the year.
The company is also set to continue a revamp of its operations as it looks to be more like an investment advisor rather than its current position of broker-dealer. Casady outlined that advisory assets make up around 40 per cent of business for the company and have doubled during the previous five years.
In addition, he commented that the current market volatility had proven challenging, particularly in terms of brokerage sales. Fees dropped five per cent during the quarter for the advisory business, while the asset business increased two per cent over the year. Overall, LPL was able to ascertain $3.1billion of new advisory assets representing a seven per cent growth rate over the year; while advisory and brokerage assets increased three per cent in the quarter and were flat across the year overall.