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Congress Wealth Management

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Congress Wealth Management

Congress Wealth Management is a financial advisor firm headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts with about $1.6 billion in assets under management. The firm provides advisory services to mostly high net worth individuals, but it also works with pension and profit sharing plans, charitable organizations and pooled investment vehicles, among others. The firm was founded in 1985, and it is led by President Paul Lonergan and Managing Director Ken Zannoni. With its headquarters in Boston and a satellite office in Westport, Connecticut, the firm offers a range of wealth management, portfolio management and financial planning services.

Congress Wealth Management Background

Congress Wealth Management was founded in 1985 in Boston. Since then, it has grown to provide services to approximately 600 clients and to open a satellite office in Connecticut. As of June 2018, the firm had roughly $1.6 billion in assets under management. Congress has 11 advisors, and it is led by President Paul Lonergan.

What Types of Clients Does Congress Wealth Management Accept?

Congress Wealth Management provides advisory services to individuals, high net worth individuals, pooled investment vehicles, pension and profit sharing plans, charitable organizations, corporations and other businesses.

Congress Wealth Management Minimum Account Sizes

In general, Congress Wealth Management requires an account size of at least $1 million for its services. Advisors have the right to waive this minimum requirement at their own discretion.

Services Offered by Congress Wealth Management

Congress Wealth Management provides a standard range of services to its clients, including the following:

  • Wealth management
  • Family Office services
  • Investment portfolio management
  • Financial planning

Congress Wealth Management Investment Philosophy

The core tenet of Congress Wealth Management’s investment philosophy is that asset allocation is the primary determinant of long-term returns. With the assistance of Congress Asset Management, an affiliate company, the firm bases its asset allocation recommendations on each client’s individual time horizon, risk tolerance, cash needs and other preferences.

The firm also adheres to what it calls a core and satellite approach. The “core” portion allows the firm to provide a broad, efficient representation of the market within each portfolio. This typically means investing in a mix of equity and fixed income instruments. The “satellite” portion allows the firm to potentially enhance returns through investments that may rely on active management or deal with less mainstream risk factors. In practice, this could include investing in REITs, energy MLPs, commodities or high yield bonds.

Fees Under Congress Wealth Management

Congress Wealth Management doesn’t maintain a set fee schedule for its wealth management services. Rather, it typically charges between 0.50% and 1.25% of assets under management, billed quarterly in arrears. Fees for financial planning services and family offices services are negotiable and dependent on the size and complexity of your account. All of your fees will be discussed and included in your investment management agreement before the beginning of your relationship with the firm.

What to Watch out For

For many of its wealth management clients, Congress Wealth Management serves as what it calls a "manager of managers." This means that rather than recommending specific securities or funds to its clients, it recommends investment managers who will then recommend specific investments. The primary investment manager it recommends is Congress Asset Management, an affiliated investment adviser which is owned by Lagan Holding Company. Lagan Holding Company is also the owner of Lagan Wildwood Investments LLC, which in turn is a minority owner of Congress Wealth Management. Two senior executives at Congress Asset Management also serve on the Board of Directors of Congress Wealth Management. Further, Paul Lonergan, the president of Congress Wealth Management, is a non-voting member on the management committee of Congress Asset Management, a role for which he receives compensation.

All of these connections represent a potential conflict of interest. Congress Wealth Management disclose these and other potential conflicts before entering into an investment agreement. This is pursuant to its fiduciary duty to act in its clients’ best interest.

Disclosures

Congress Wealth Management has reported one disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission. In 2016, Congress Wealth Management was sanctioned for negligently relying on the strategy of another firm, F-Squared Investments, Inc., that had falsely represented the performance of that strategy. Congress Wealth Management used this strategy to manage less than 5% of the assets under its purview from May 2009 to October 2013.

Opening an Account With Congress Wealth Management

If you’re looking to strike up a relationship with Congress Wealth Management, you can fill out the contact form on its website. The form requires your name, email and a short message. You can also contact the firm by phone. The phone number for the Boston office is (617) 428-7600 and the number for the Westport office is (203) 557-6429.

Where Is Congress Wealth Management Located?

Congress Wealth Management has two offices, one in Boston, Massachusetts and one in Westport, Connecticut. The Boston office is in the Seaport District on Northern Avenue. The Westport office is near the Saugatuck River on the intersection of Wright Street and Route 1.

Tips for Finding a Financial Advisor

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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
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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