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GW&K Investment Management Review

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GWK Investment Management, LLC

In business for nearly a half century, GW&K Investment Management, LLC is a fee-only firm headquartered in Boston. The firm offers investment advisory services to 40,000 clients who include individual and institutional clients. GW&K specializes in active equity and fixed income investment solutions, and it incorporates equity, municipal bond and taxable bond strategies in its investment process. 

The financial advisor has more than $42 billion in assets under management (AUM). 

GW&K Investment Management Background

The firm was founded in 1974, and in 2008 it became a partner of Affiliated Managers Group, Inc, a publicly-traded global asset management company. In addition to its municipal bond strategies, the firm employs small cap and small/mid cap and core fixed income investment approaches. GW&K manages wrap accounts, and it also participates in certain sub-advisory agreements. 

GW&K Investment Management Client Types and Minimum Account Sizes

GW&K accepts private or high-net-worth clients, estates, pension and profit-sharing plans, charitable foundations, endowments, corporations, private funds, mutual funds, Undertakings for Collective Investment in Transferable Securities (UCITS) funds, collective trusts and other entities. 

The firm's minimum account size varies by asset class and GW&K strategy. For advisory services the firm provides to wrap fee programs, or for sub-advisory services it offers to pooled investment vehicles, the relevant program or fund sponsor determines the minimum. 

Services Offered by GW&K Investment Management

GW&K offers the following advisory services:

Investment Philosophy

GW&K states that it believes in rigorous research, disciplined management and a client-driven culture. It seeks to find unexpected investment opportunities and provides personalized management services.

The firm describes its management approach as one that places clients’ interests first and strives to meet investment objectives in the midst of market fluctuations.

GW&K Investment Management Fees

For investment advisory services, GW&K earns 1.00% for equity strategies and 0.65% for fixed income strategies. (For context, the industry average is 0.95%, according to a 2018 study of 1,500 firms by RIA in a Box.) GW&K fee rates vary per account size and investment strategy. The firm’s standard fee schedules are negotiable, and its fees are usually billed quarterly in advance or in arrears. 

For the firm’s sub-advisory services to pooled investment vehicles, and its management of wrap programs, each vehicle or program’s contract sponsor determines the advisory fee. The fee schedules for private funds, mutual funds and UCITS are specified in each fund’s prospectus or offering memorandum. The firm also manages some programs without full discretion, and these fees are also determined each program’s or account’s sponsor. 

GW&K additionally receives performance-based fees for its investment management. The fees are based on a percentage of the net profits being managed. 

Learn more about what advisors typically cost here.

What to Watch Out For

This firm has no disclosures of legal or regulatory action in its most recent filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

One thing to note: The firm acknowledges that its side-by-side management of asset-based and performance-based accounts may create incentive for advisors to favor performance-based accounts. This is because the performance-based accounts may earn them higher compensation if investments perform well. That said, the firm has a fiduciary duty to put work in clients' best interests.

Opening an Account With GW&K Investment Management

If you’re interested in opening an account, you can reach out to an advisor through the firm’s contact page. You can also call the firm’s main office at (617) 236-8900.

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

Tips for Finding a Financial Advisor

  • Finding a financial advisor is one thing, but finding the right financial advisor is another. If you’re having trouble, SmartAsset’s free financial advisor matching tool will connect you with up to three local advisors.
  • Ask prospective advisors about their formal training and professional certifications. Surprisingly, you don’t need to have any training to be a financial advisor. So advisors who have professional credentials will have that much more preparation - and probably a speciality.

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