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Beacon Capital Management 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.

Based in Dayton, Ohio, Beacon Capital Management provides investment management services to various types of clients, including individuals, pensions and profit sharing plans, financial advisors, charitable organizations, corporations and other advisory managed accounts. The firm’s investment team designs investment portfolios based on research from Nobel-Prize-winning scholars and various investment strategies.

Fee-only Beacon Capital Management was recently named to Financial Advisor Magazine’s 2020 top RIA list. It also landed on the Financial Times’ list of the top 300 registered investment advisors (RIAs) in 2019.

Beacon Capital Management Background

James Christopher Cook founded Beacon Capital Management in 2000, after graduating from Bowling Green University with a bachelor’s degree in business administration. He holds multiple securities licenses with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) and is the author of the best-selling book “Slash Your Retirement Risk.”

Beacon Capital Management Client Types and Minimum Account Sizes

Beacon Capital Management serves individuals (including high-net-worth ones), pension and profit-sharing plans and business entities. 

The firm imposes various minimum investment requirements for each of its model portfolios. These range from $5,000 to $25,000, with the typical minimum account size for portfolio strategies being $25,000. That said, the firm may reduce or waive these minimums at its discretion.

Services Offered by Beacon Capital Management

Beacon Capital Management provides investment management advice through a variety of programs:

Investment Supervisory Services

Beacon Capital Management can build portfolios for clients based on their risk tolerance, time horizon, tax situation and other personal factors. The firm’s advisors would also monitor these portfolios and make certain adjustments if deemed suitable to help the client meet investment goals. 

Investment Advisory Services

Beacon Capital Management can also serve as a co-advisor to clients referred to the firm by representatives of other RIA firms or broker-dealers. The firm provides these specific clients with access to one or more of the following portfolio models: 

Beacon Vantage 1.0 Portfolio Strategy - designed for the long-term investor, this strategy invests primarily in small company stocks and value stocks through mutual funds and offers global exposure. There are aggressive, balanced and conservative models.

Beacon Vantage 2.0 Portfolio Strategy - aiming for consistent returns while avoiding significant losses, this strategy invests equally in stocks across 11 different market sectors. It also gives equal weight to long-term, intermediate-term and short-term fixed income holdings. 

Beacon Vantage 3.0 Portfolio Strategy: in addition to sharing objectives and asset allocations with Vantage 2.0, this strategy offers an alternative investment and bond model. The alternative portfolio aims for equal investment across currencies, commodities and private equity investment products. The bond portfolio offers exposure to extended duration, long-term, intermediate-term, inflation-protected and short-term fixed income holdings.

Also, Beacon Capital Management can provide its model portfolio strategies to separately managed accounts (SMA) and unified managed accounts (UMA) through platform providers such as Envestnet, Lockwood Advisors and Trust Company of America.

Pension Consulting Services

Beacon Capital Management offers consulting services to pensions, 401(k)s and profit-sharing plans. These services may include investment menu selection, investment monitoring and preparation of an investment policy statement (IPS)

Beacon Capital Management Investment Philosophy

Beacon Capital Management’s investment philosophy is driven by the following three principles:

  • Maximize diversification through equal sector allocation.
  • Minimize losses with mechanical investments.
  • Maintain discipline to protect from emotion-led decision making.

The investment philosophies of various scholars also informs the firm's approach. For instance, the Beacon Vantage 1.0 Portfolio follows an asset-allocation strategy based on the work of Eugene Fama and Kenneth French.

Fees Under Beacon Capital Management

Clients receiving the firm’s investment supervisory services negotiate fees with their advisors. These fees may not exceed 1.8% of assets under management (AUM) annually, though there is a $400 minimum fee per year. 

Investment Advisory Fee Schedule
Average Daily Value of Client Account Annual Fee Rate
$0 - $499,999.99 0.55%
$500,000 - $999,999.99 0.35%
$1,000,000 and up 0.15%

Here's a breakdown of what you might pay in advisory fees at this firm. For context, a 2018 study by RIA in a Box found that the average annual advisory fee is 0.95% of AUM.

*Estimated investment management fees do not include brokerage, custodial, third-party manager or other fees, which can vary in amount.
Estimated Investment Management Fees at Beacon Capital Management*
Your Assets Beacon Capital Management Fee Amount
$500K $1,750
$1MM $1,500
$5MM $7,500
$10MM $15,000

Beacon Capital Management negotiates separately managed account (SMA) fees with platform providers. These can be as high as 0.55% with an annual $400 floor. 

For pension consulting services that include ongoing monitoring, the firm may charge an annual fee that ranges from 0.10% to 1.00% of plan assets under advisement, depending upon the size of the plan and the complexity of the services requested. When asset allocation services are included, this fee ranges from 0.85% to 1.80%. 

Beacon Capital Management Awards and Recognition 

As noted earlier, Beacon Capital Management ranked among the Financial Times' 300 Top Registered Investment Advisors in 2019. The list featured firms from across the United States. Judges analyzed applicants based on the following factors: 

  • AUM
  • AUM growth rate
  • Years in existence
  • Advanced industry credentials of the firm’s advisors
  • Online accessibility
  • Compliance records

The firm was also named by Financial Advisor Magazine as a top 20920 RIA and recognized as one of the 2019 “Top 100 ETF Power Users” by RIA Channel.

What to Watch Out For

Beacon Capital Management had no legal or disciplinary matters to report in its most recent SEC filings.

Beacon Capital Management focuses on investment management services. So if you want financial advice on other topics like estate planning or debt management and savings strategies, you may want to look elsewhere. 

Opening an Account With Beacon Capital Management

For those of you interested in working with Beacon, you should go online to the firm's website and submit a contact form. You can also contact the firm over the phone or visit in person to speak with someone who can help.

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

Tips for Finding the Right Financial Advisor

  • Beacon Capital Management may not focus on individualized financial planning, but we can help you find a firm that does. SmartAsset's free tool matches you with up to three financial advisors who serve your area, and you can interview your advisor matches at no cost to decide which one is right for you. If you’re ready to find an advisor who can help you achieve your financial goals, get started now.
  • Fee structures can vary widely across advisors, and the difference can take a big chunk out of your balance. So make sure you know how prospective financial advisors get paid. Some work on a fee-only basis, which means they make money solely from clients. Other advisors may get a commission from vendors, in addition to the advisory fee they collect from clients, which may present potential conflicts of interest.

How Long $1mm 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.

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

Methodology We analyzed data on average expenditures for seniors, cost of living and investment returns to determine how many years of retirement a $1 million nest egg would cover in cities across America.

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%. 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