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Summit Trail Advisors 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.

Summit Trail Advisors has earned much recognition for its industry expertise over the years. In 2022, the financial advisor once again appeared on Barron's list of America's Top 1,200 Financial Advisors by State.

This New York-based firm currently manages retail and institutional clients. Advisory compensation includes asset-based fees, hourly fees and fixed fees. 

Summit Trail Advisors has a fee-based fee structure, meaning advisors can earn compensation both from the services provided and from product sales, which presents a potential conflict of interest.  

Summit Trail Advisors Background

Summit Trail is a limited liability company that was founded in 2015. The registered investment advisor (RIA) is also a wholly-owned subsidiary of Summit Trail Holdings, LLC. In addition to its headquarters in New York, it has offices in San Francisco, Chicago, Boston, Seattle and Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. 

The firm’s management team includes Jack Petersen, David Romhilt and Thomas Harms.

Summit Trail Advisors Client Types and Minimum Account Sizes

Summit’s client types include individuals, high-net-worth individuals, trusts, estates, business entities, pension and profit sharing plans and charitable organizations. 

The firm doesn’t impose a set account minimum. While Summit Trail Advisors has a wrap fee program, the firm doesn't offer it to new clients.

Services Offered by Summit Trail Advisors

Summit provides the following advisory services: 

  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management
  • Pension consulting
  • Selection of other advisors (including private fund managers)
  • Private fund investments
  • Outsourced chief investment officer services
  • Family office services

Summit Trail Advisors Investment Philosophy 

Summit says on its website that its team constantly researches economies, capital markets and strategies for the best investment outcomes.  When offering investment recommendations, the firm’s investment process focuses on the following three areas: asset allocation, investment selection and portfolio construction. In addition, Summit uses fundamental analysis and technical analysis to evaluate securities. 

The firm mainly invests in exchange-traded funds (ETFs), separate accounts, mutual funds and limited partnerships. 

Summit Trail Advisors Fees

Investment advisory fees at Summit generally range up to 1.50% of assets. Outsourced chief investment officer (CIO) services come with an annual fee of $150,000. For financial planning and consulting services, Summit generally charges flat fees ranging from $5,000 to $75,000, though such fees are negotiable. The firm offers hourly fees ranging from $500 to $1,000. See how much you might pay for investment advisory services below:

*Estimated investment management fees do not include brokerage, custodial, third-party manager or other fees, which can vary in amount.
Estimated Investment Management Fees at Summit Trail Advisors*
Your Assets Summit Trail Advisors Maximum Fee Amount
$500K Up to $7,500
$1MM Up to $15,000
$5MM Up to $75,000
$10MM Up to $150,000

Learn more about advisors' typical costs here.

What to Watch Out For

Summit doesn’t have any disclosures on its record, but it’s important to consider that the firm’s fee structure may present conflicts of interest. Because some advisors may recommend or sell investment products for additional compensation in the form of commissions, a client's needs may be neglected if such advisors push products with higher fees but lower suitability for clients. 

Opening an Account with Summit Trail Advisors 

You can set up an account with Summit by visiting the firm’s New York office or any of its other locations. You can also contact the firm at (212) 812-7010. 

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

Retirement Planning Tips for Beginners

  • It’s wise to plan for retirement before you reach retirement age. If you’re not sure how much you’ll need to settle comfortably in your post-employment years, our retirement calculator can help.
  • A financial advisor can be a valuable resource as you plan for retirement. Finding a qualified financial advisor doesn’t have to be hard. SmartAsset’s free tool matches you with up to three financial advisors who serve your area, and you can interview your advisor matches at no cost to decide which one is right for you. If you’re ready to find an advisor who can help you achieve your financial goals, get started now. 

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