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Associated Investment Services Review

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This review was produced by SmartAsset based on publicly available information. The named firm and its financial professionals have not reviewed, approved, or endorsed this review and are not responsible for its accuracy. Review content is produced by SmartAsset independently of any business relationships that might exist between SmartAsset and the named firm and its financial professionals, and firms and financial professionals having business relationships with SmartAsset receive no special treatment or consideration in SmartAsset’s reviews. This page contains links to SmartAsset’s financial advisor matching tool, which may or may not match you with the firm mentioned in this review or its financial professionals.

Associated Investment Services

Associated Investment Services (AIS) is the financial advisor arm of Associated Bank, a well-known bank located in the Midwest. Associated Bank has branches in Illinois, Wisconsin and Minnesota. The bank offers general investment management and financial planning services to clients through AIS. AIS itself is located in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

AIS is a fee-based firm. As a result, some of its advisors can receive commissions from insurance and securities transactions.

Associated Investment Services Background

Associated Investment Services was established quite a while back in 1923, when its predecessor firm was established as a broker-dealer. Associated Bank, the parent company of AIS, was founded in 1861. AIS itself was founded as a part of Associated Bank in 2004, becoming officially registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in 2010. It is prinicpally owned by Associated Banc-Corp.

Associated Investment Services Client Types and Minimum Account Sizes

Most of the clients that work with Associated Investment Services are non-high-net-worth individuals, which makes sense given that Associated Bank works with individual banking customers. Other clients of AIS include high net worth individuals, charitable organizations, state and municipal governments and businesses.

For the majority of programs at Associated Investment Services, minimums are either $50,000 or $100,000.

Serviced Offered by Associated Investment Services

Associated Investment Services provides both investment management services and financial planning and consulting services. The firm's investment management services are provided through a number of different investment programs, which go as follows:

  • Vanguard Core Strategist Models
  • American Funds PMC Active Core Portfolios
  • ASAP Program
  • Russell Strategist Models
  • Wilshire Strategist Models
  • PMC SIGMA Mutual Fund Solution
  • PMC Strategic ETF Portfolio 
  • BlackRock Models
  • Pimco Models
  • Innealta Tactical ETF Portfolio 
  • Separately Managed Accounts 

Clients will also have access to the Liquid Endowment Model Program, which clients can access at three different tiers for a specific minimum. Many of these investment programs are managed by separate management companies.

Associated Investment Services Investment Philosophy

When conducting an investment management relationship with a client, Associated Investment Services will work with them to determine their financial situation and overall financial objectives. Based on these factors, the advisor will recommend an investment program that specifically works for them. This depends on specific factors, such as the client's tolerance for risk and time horizon, among other things.

Envestnet, Innealta, Kellogg, Russell, Vanguard or Wilshire then manage the client's chosen account according to their investment strategies. From this point on, the providers do not provide individualized and in-house investment management.

Fees Under Associated Investment Services

When it comes to the advisory services at Associated Investment Services, fees are charged based on a percentage of each client's total AUM. These schedules are detailed by AUM tier, and they vary significantly from program to program. Specific fees may also be negotiable, depending on the type of programs you invest with. Fee rates for the various programs at the firm generally range from 0.65% up to 2.12%.

What to Watch Out For

Associated Investment Services has three disclosures listed on its Form ADV. Two of these disclosures relate to the firm directly, whereas one is attributed to an advisory affiliate of the firm. One of the disclosures relate to the firm selling unregistered securities. The other is in reference to the firm failing to meet specific supervisory procedures issued by the NASD. In one case, the firm paid a civil penalty. 

AIS employs advisors who are broker-dealer representatives or insurance agents. This makes the firm fee-based, as the commissions earned in conjunction with these roles can cause a potential conflict of interest. Depsite this, the firm is legally bound to act in clients' best interests at all times.

Opening an Account With Associated Investment Services

There are many options if you're interested in working with Associated Investment Services. You can visit the firm's website and click "find a consultant," or you can call and speak with someone over the phone.

All information is accurate as of the writing of this review.

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