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Oppenheimer Asset 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.

Oppenheimer Asset Management is a nationwide network of financial advisors headquartered in New York City. It employs a large team of advisors who work with thousands of individual and institutional clients. 

This is technically a fee-only firm, so it only receives standard advisory fees from clients. A fee-based firm, on the other hand, receives both advisory fees from clients and third-party forms of compensation (such as insurance commissions), which can introduce conflicts of interest.

Oppenheimer Asset Management Background

Oppenheimer Asset Management has been in business since 1986 and is owned by Viner Finance, Inc., an indirect subsidiary of Oppenheimer Holdings Inc.

Today, the firm is led by CEO and chairman Albert Lowenthal and a 12-person management committee. The firm's advisors are located at different branches throughout the country, of which there are about 50.

Many financial advisors at Oppenheimer have advisory certifications. These include certified financial planners (CFPs), chartered financial analysts (CFAs) and more.

Oppenheimer Asset Management Client Types and Minimum Account Sizes

Oppenheimer Asset Management works with a variety of client types. Of its tens of thousands of clients, most are individuals without a high net worth. However, the firm also works with high-net-worth individuals, pension and profit-sharing plans, charitable organizations, state and municipal governments and businesses.

The minimum account size required to become a client of this firm varies based on the type of account you're looking to open:

  • Investment Grade Tax-Exempt Accounts: $150,000
  • High-Yield Tax-Exempt Accounts: $250,000
  • Core, Core Plus, Corporate Core Plus, High-Yield and Intermediate Taxable Accounts and Insurance Accounts: $150,000 - $250,000
  • Cash Management Accounts: $150,000

Services Offered by Oppenheimer Asset Management

Oppenheimer Asset Management offers both investment management and consulting services. While the firm has a number of model portfolios and strategies, it can tailor its investment advice to the various needs of clients, like their time horizon, liquidity needs and risk tolerance. The firm offers the following discretionary fixed-income accounts:

  • Core Fixed-Income
  • Core Plus Fixed-Income
  • Corporate Core Plus Fixed-Income
  • Intermediate Fixed-Income
  • High-Yield Fixed-Income
  • Insurance Fixed-Income
  • Investment Grade Tax-Exempt Fixed-Income
  • High-Yield Tax-Exempt Fixed-Income
  • Cash Management

Oppenheimer investment consulting services include the following:

  • Development of an investment policy statement (IPS)
  • Development of an asset allocation strategy
  • Monitoring of portfolio managers
  • Client reporting

Oppenheimer Investment Advisers (OIA), a division of Oppenheimer Asset Management, also provides wrap fee services to other advisors.

Oppenheimer Asset Management Investment Philosophy

Since Oppenheimer Asset Management invests using a series of model portfolios, there isn't one broad investment philosophy that advisors tend to follow. Rather, all investment plans are centered around clients' ultimate financial goals, tolerance for risk, income needs, time horizon and any other applicable factors.

That said, advisors usually focus on bottom-up portfolio construction, optimal bond investments and balanced asset allocations. They also tend to look for undervalued securities, while taking into account risk/reward profiles, alternative investments, potential deterioration of credit fundamentals.

Advisors use industry analysis, company analysis, capital structure and security analysis and indenture covenant analysis to help inform their investment decisions. The firms uses a variety of third-party data and information sources, many of which are public.

Fees Under Oppenheimer Asset Management

Oppenheimer Asset Management charges its advisory fees based on the services you subscribe to. These fees are based on a percentage of your total assets invested in that program. 

Oppenheimer Asset Management Program Fees
Program Maximum Annual Fees
OIA Wrap Fee 0.80%
High-Yield 1.00%
High-Yield Tax-Exempt 1.25%
Tax Exempt Bond Laddered 0.50%
Tax Exempt Short Duration Cash 0.50%
OIA Retirement Plan 0.80%
Equity and Balanced UMA 3.00%
Fixed-Income UMA 0.80%
Mutual Fund UMA 1.75%
ETF UMA 1.50%
Retirement Plan UMA 2.70%
Strategic Asset Review (STAR) Equity and Balanced 2.25%
STAR Fixed-Income 0.50%
STAR Retirement Plan 2.25%
Portfolio Advisory Services (PAS) Flex 1.50%
PAS Managed Allocation Series (MAS) 1.75%
PAS Flex Retirement 1.50%
PAS MAS Retirement 1.75%
All other OIA Accounts 0.30%
Portfolio Enhancement Program and Hedged Portfolio Enhancement Program $12,000 - $74,400

Certain fees are subject to negotiation between the client and their advisor. Fees are billed quarterly, in advance.

What to Watch Out For

Oppenheimer Asset Management does have seven regulatory disclosures listed on its SEC-filed Form ADV. While some of these disclosures relate to advisory affiliates of the firm, a few apply to Oppenheimer itself. These are related to various issues, such as the firm allegedly misrepresenting the asset value of a fund to investors and buying mutual fund shares that paid commissions without disclosing these commissions to clients.

In one of those cases in 2013, Oppenheimer Asset Management paid a $617,579 penalty, consented to a censure and paid over $2.2 million in disgorgement to certain investors. 

Opening an Account With Oppenheimer Asset Management

To open an account with Oppenheimer Asset Management, you'll need to use its website to find a branch or advisor in your area. From there, you can call or email the firm directly. You can also request an appointment through an online form.

Retirement Planning Tips

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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