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B Riley Wealth Management Review

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B. Riley Wealth Management, Inc.

B. Riley Wealth Management, Inc.

B. Riley Wealth Management, Inc. is a Memphis, Tennessee-based financial advisor firm with more than $2.6 billion in assets under management (AUM). The firm employs a large team of 180 financial advisors who work in a variety of locations around the U.S. The firm provides financial planning, consulting and asset management services to its client base, which is comprised primarily of individuals.

B. Riley is a fee-based firm. That means certain members of its advisory staff can sell insurance and securities products on a commission basis. They receives such commissions in addition to the advisory fees paid to them by clients. That's different from a fee-only firm, which only receives advisory fees and does not earn third-party forms of compensation.

B. Riley Wealth Management Background

B. Riley Wealth Management was founded in 1996 as Wunderlich Securities, Inc. At that time, the firm was only an investment company, as it wasn't until 2001 that it began offering investment advisory services. The firm is led by CEO Philip Zanone, who has been in the position since 2018, and President Chuck Hastings. B. Riley is owned by Wunderlich Investment Firm, Inc., which is a wholly owned subsidiary of B. Riley Financial, Inc.

The firm has offices in 18 different states. Among the financial advisors employed by the firm, there are several financial certifications, including for certified financial planner (CFP), accredited investment fiduciary (AIF) and more.

B. Riley Wealth Management Client Types and Minimum Account Sizes

B. Riley Wealth Management provides financial services to a wide range of clients. Most of them are non-high-net-worth individuals, but the firm also works with high-net-worth individuals, retirement plans, charitable organizations and corporations. It also offers services to wrap fee programs, trusts and estates.

This firm's minimum account sizes vary by program:

  • Wunderlich Securities, Inc., Wrap Fee Program (WSI): $250,000
  • Wunderlich Asset Management Program (WAM): $50,000
  • Alpha Research Portfolio Program (ARP): $100,000
  • Wunderlich Investment Solutions Discretionary Management (WISDM)
    • Mutual fund portfolios: $15,000
    • Exchange-traded fund (ETF) portfolios: $25,000

Services Offered by B. Riley Wealth Management

B. Riley Wealth Management provides a wide variety of financial planning, consulting and investment management services to its clients. While financial planning services are typically designed to help clients with their overall financial goals, such services typically include one of more of the following:

  • Budgeting
  • Estate planning
  • Income tax and spending analysis
  • Cash needs at death
  • Income needs of surviving dependents
  • Retirement strategies
  • Analysis of investment alternatives

Financial consulting services are more directed at single issues that clients are interested in receiving help with. This service does not involve a written report and is much narrower in scope than the general financial planning offering. Asset and investment management services provided by the firm are tailored to the individual objectives of each client.

The firm works with clients to construct portfolios and may use a wide range of different investments. The firm has both non-wrap and wrap fee programs available. The firm also has a number of model portfolios and portfolio programs that it may employ to help you develop an optimal portfolio:

  • WSI Wrap Plan
  • Wunderlich Asset Management Program (WAM)
  • Wunderlich Investment Solutions Discretionary Management (WISDM)
  • Alpha Research Portfolio Program (ARP)

B. Riley Wealth Management Investing Philosophy

B. Riley Wealth Management's investment philosophy is centered around helping clients craft portfolios that align with their investment objectives, time horizon, risk tolerance and other important factors. Advisors provide advice on a wide range of securities, including:

  • Foreign and domestic stocks
  • Corporate and government bonds
  • Certificates of deposit (CDs)
  • Money market funds
  • Mutual funds
  • ETFs
  • Closed-end funds
  • Limited partnerships
  • Variable life and variable annuities
  • Options

To help inform investment decisions, the firm and its advisors rely upon a wide range of information sources that are both publically and privately available. The firm makes it clear that it does not adhere to a single investment strategy when working with portfolios. The only goal is to help them achieve their ultimate financial goals, and advisors employ any strategy they see fit to make that happen. Some strategies this firm's advisors typically engage in include long- and short-term purchases, day-trading, short selling, margin trading and options transactions.

Fees Under B. Riley Wealth Management

Fees under B. Riley Wealth Management vary significantly depending on the type of account you're looking to open. The WAM and WSI wrap fee programs have negotiable annual fees which are capped at 2.00% of the client's AUM annually. All non-wrap fee programs also have a maximum annual fee of 2.00%. The ARP program is the only one with a variable fee schedule:

APR Program Annual Fees
Total AUM Annual Fee
Up to $200K 1.50%
$200K to $300K 1.25%
Above $300K 1.00%

For comparison's sake, the average fee for investment management is 0.95%, according to a 2018 study of 1,500 firms by RIA in a Box. Learn more about what advisors typical cost here. B. Riley bills fees quarterly.

What to Watch Out For

B. Riley Wealth Management had several disclosures on its Form ADV. As a result of some of these, the firm has paid fines and submitted to censure, disgorgement and restitution. These disclosures relate to such violations as the firm's failure to report that its affiliated securities firm was on probation and the overcharging of clients for commissions and transactional fees.

Also worth noting: certain B. Riley Wealth Management employees receive commissions from the sale of specific insurance products and securities to clients. This is a conflict of interest, because advisors may have an incentive to recommend certain transactions that earn them commissions. That said, the firm a fiduciary, meaning that it is legally bound to act in the best interests of clients.

Opening an Account With B. Riley Wealth Management

For those interested in opening an account with B. Riley Wealth Management, you can visit the firm's website and submit a contact form. Alternately, you can call the firm's headquarters at (877) 488-3748. On its website, you can find contact information for locations other than its main office.

Tips for Retirement Planning

  • Putting together a retirement income plan on your own can get complicated, which is why many people choose to work with a financial advisor. Finding the right financial advisor for you doesn’t have to be hard. SmartAsset’s free tool matches you with financial advisors in your area in 5 minutes. If you’re ready to be matched with local advisors, get started now.
  • Don’t forget to take Social Security payments into account as you consider what kind of income you’ll need in retirement. If you don’t know what you’re in line to receive, check out SmartAsset’s Social Security calculator.

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

How Many Years $1 Million Lasts in Retirement

SmartAsset's interactive map highlights places where $1 million will last the longest in retirement. Zoom between states and the national map to see the top spots in each region. Also, scroll over any city to learn about the cost of living in retirement for that location.

Least
Most
Rank City Housing Expenses Food Expenses Healthcare Expenses Utilities Expenses Transportation Expenses

Methodology To determine how long a $1 million nest egg would cover retirement costs in cities across America, we analyzed data on average expenditures for seniors, cost of living and investment returns.

First, we looked at data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) on the average annual expenditures of seniors. We then applied cost of living data from the Council for Community and Economic Research to adjust those national average spending levels based on the costs of each expense category (housing, food, healthcare, utilities, transportation and other) in each city. Using this data, SmartAsset calculated the average cost of living for retirees in the largest U.S. cities.

We assumed the $1 million would grow at a real return (interest minus inflation) of 2%. This reflects the typical return on a conservative investment portfolio. Then, we divided $1 million by the sum of each of those annual numbers to determine how long $1 million would cover retirement expenses in each of the cities in our study. Cities where $1 million lasted the longest ranked the highest in the study.

Sources: Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), Council for Community and Economic Research