Lazard Asset Management is a financial advisor firm headquartered in New York City with approximately $140 billion in assets under management (AUM). The firm works with a wide range of clients, but more than 81% of its client base currently consists of individuals (including high-net-worth individuals). Today, the firm has almost 270 advisors working with more than 8,000 clients.
As a fee-only firm, Lazard Asset Management earns compensation solely from the advisory fees that it charges clients. This differs from a fee-based firm, which also receives outside compensationin the form of insurance and securities transactions.
Lazard Asset Management Background
Lazard Asset Management was founded in 1970. It’s owned by Lazard Frères & Co., LLC, which is owned by Lazard Group LLC, which is ultimately owned by Lazard Ltd., a publicly-traded company on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE).
Certain advisors at this firm have earned professional certifications such as chartered financial analyst (CFA), certified investment management analyst (CIMA) and chartered alternative investment analyst (CAIA).
What Types of Clients Does Lazard Asset Management Accept?
Lazard Asset Management offers services to individuals, high-net-worth individuals, banks, investment companies, pooled investment vehicles, retirement plans, charitable organizations, government entities, other investment advisors, insurance companies and corporations. Individual clients make up the vast majority of the firm’s client base, though.
Lazard Asset Management Minimum Account Sizes
Lazard Asset Management doesn’t have a set minimum account size. However, many of its investment strategies have minimum investment requirements that range from $5 million to $100 million. The firm reserves its right to waive these minimums at its discretion.
Services Offered by Lazard Asset Management
Lazard Asset Management primarily provides investment management services on a discretionary basis, following a wide range of investment strategies. These strategies can focus on either a single asset class or a combination of them, and they can be global, regional or domestic in scope.
Other, less common investment strategies at Lazard include foreign currency transactions and wrap fee programs sponsored by other institutions.
Lazard Asset Management Investment Philosophy
Lazard Asset Management manages assets according to a variety of equity, fixed-income and alternative investment strategies. These include strategies focusing on global, regional and international equities; domestic equities; fixed-income securities; emerging markets equity; and debt.
To fulfill these strategies, the firm may invest in a wide range of securities, including equity and debt securities, exchange-listed securities, securities traded over the counter (OTC), real estate investment trusts (REITs), warrants, corporate debt, certificates of deposit (CDs), commercial paper, municipal securities, open- and closed-end investment company securities, government securities, options contracts, futures contracts, asset-backed securities, non-U.S. government bonds, adjustable-rate mortgages, collateralized debt or mortgage obligations, commercial mortgage-backed securities, structured notes, currencies, reinsurance-backed bonds, mortgage derivatives, forwards, swaps and other derivatives including credit default swaps and interest-rate swaps, listed and OTC options, options on foreign exchanges, rights offerings, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), exchange-traded notes (ETNs), convertible bonds, preferred stock and interest-only or principal-only securities.
Fees Under Lazard Asset Management
Fees for investment management services at Lazard Asset Management are based on a percentage of your AUM. They are payable either monthly or quarterly most of the time, and this can be either in arrears or in advance. The exact fee percentage can vary depending on your investment strategy and the size of your account. They adhere to the following ranges:
- Global equity strategies: 0.50% - 1.50%
- Convertible securities strategies: 0.55% - 0.70%
- Quantitative equity strategies: 0.25% - 0.85%
- Regional equity strategies: 0.65% - 1.00%
- Country specific equity strategies: 0.35% - 0.80%
- Balanced strategies: 0.50% - 1.00%
- Fixed-income strategies: 0.20% - 0.80%
- Alternatives strategies: 0.65% - 2.00%
What to Watch Out For
Lazard Asset Management includes performance-based fees within its fee schedule. The firm states in its Form ADV that this arrangement “creates an incentive for (the firm) to make investments that are riskier or more speculative than would be the case in the absence of a performance fee.” Despite the potential for a conflict of interest that this creates, the firm is bound by fiduciary duty, legally binding it to act in your best interest no matter what.
Opening an Account With Lazard Asset Management
There are a few different ways you can get in touch with Lazard Asset Management. You can visit the firm’s website and fill out the contact form with your name, email address, phone number and message. If you’d prefer to speak over the phone, you can instead call the firm at (212) 632-6000. Should neither of these routes work for you, try emailing the firm at contact.US@lazard.com.
Where Is Lazard Asset Management Located?
Lazard Asset Management’s headquarters are located in New York City at the famous 30 Rockefeller Plaza ("30 Rock"), a building it shares with the likes of Saturday Night Live and The Tonight Show. The firm also has secondary offices in Boston and San Francisco.
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