Top-ranked U.S. advisor dead in wake of irregularities in personal fund

An advisor ranked 5th on the Barron’s list of top advisors has taken his own life.

Top-ranked U.S. advisor dead in wake of irregularities in personal fund
The well-known market-based publication Barron’s is running a tragic story about a top U.S. independent financial advisor, David Zier, who, apparently, took his own life October 15th.

According to the report Zier, 44, was chief executive of the independent advisor firm, Convergent Wealth Advisors, based in Potomac, Md. Convergent Wealth, with $8.6 billion under management, regularly ranked on Barron’s list of top advisor firms.
But Mr. Zier also ran another fund outside of Convergent, known as Zier Asset Management (ZAM), run by Zier for his friends and family. A source familiar with the situation told Barron’s that  the fund took a less conservative investment approach than the Convergent funds, dabbling in active short-term trading, options, and commodities. 

Although ZAM was a personal account for Zier, it was required to report trading activity to the Convergent compliance team. “That team began questioning Zier early this month about apparent trading discrepancies at ZAM,” according to the Barron’s report. Zier was found dead at his Virginia lake house October 15th.

Zier has, at times, been ranked No. 5 on the latest Barron’s top advisors list. The money with Convergent held by third-party custodians and is safe.  The funds will now be overseen by a group of senior advisors who work for Zier. The ZAM funds were held in a personal account controlled by Zier.