Indirectly owned by Massaschusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (Mass Mutual), MML Investors Services, LLC is an investment advisor and a brokerage. It is headquartered in Springfield, Massachusetts and has over one thousand branches across the country. This network of advisors serves hundreds of thousands of individual clients, most of whom do not have high net worths.
As a fee-based firm, MML earns both third-party and client-paid compensation. On the contrary, a fee-only firm eliminates all third-party income, instead focusing entirely on client-paid fees.
MML Investors Services Background
MML Investors has been in business since 1981. The firm became a registered investment advisor (RIA) in 1993, and as a broker-dealer holds memberships with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) and the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC).
As noted earlier, MML Investors is indirectly owned by Mass Mutual. Specifically, it is a subsidiary of MassMutual Holding LLC, which is in turn a subsidiary of the insurance company.
MML Investors Services Client Types and Minimum Account Sizes
The firm works with individuals and high-net-worth individuals, endowments and foundations, trusts, estates, Fidelity Charitable donor-advised accounts and business entities and/or qualified plans.
MML Investors’ account minimum varies based on account type. The account minimums range anywhere from $20,000 to $1,000,000, depending on the asset management program.
Services Offered by MML Investors Services
MML Investors offers its clients an extensive range of services, including:
- Portfolio management
- Financial planning
- Pension consulting
- Selection of other advisors
- Educational workshops/seminars
- Asset allocation programs
MML Investors Services Investment Philosophy
MML Investors explains on its firm brochure that it utilizes third-party investment advisors and money managers to perform investment research and provide asset allocation recommendations. The firm says it emphasizes regular portfolio review, long-term perspectives, portfolio diversification and systematic investing and dollar cost averaging.
The firm invests in mutual funds, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), variable annuity sub-accounts, individual equities, individual fixed income securities and managed accounts.
Fees Under MML Investors Services
For financial planning, fees depend on a number of factors, including the complexity and scope of services, the advisor, the geographic location and your net worth. Typically, they will not exceed $25,000, and there is a minimum $500 fee.
MML Investors works with Envestnet Asset Management, Inc. in a co-advisory arrangement to provide a range of investment programs. The advisory fees for the Envestnet programs can be up to 1.54%. Unified managed accounts carry a maximum fee of 2.25% annually and 2.10% annual for the mutual fund version. Fees for other types of accounts may vary, and have varied significantly in the past. For more specific fee information, you should contact the firm directly.
What to Watch Out For
MML Investors reported 36 disclosures of legal and regulatory actions. Of them, several involved parent company Mass Mutual and several involved affilated individuals. Some involved MML Investors itself. The firm paid fines and submitted to other disciplinary action as a result.
Advisors are also broker-dealer representatives and insurance agents. These multiple roles can pose potential conflicts of interest. However, as a fiduciary, the advisor must act in your best interest at all times.
Opening an Account With MML Investors Services
If you’re interested in setting up an account with MML Investors, you can either find an advisor close to you on the company's website, or you can set up an appointment with an advisor by calling the firm over the phone at (800)-542-6767.
All information was accurate as of the writing of this article.
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