Election Fuel: RIA M&A Market Smashes Record As Future Taxes Concerns Loom

Election concerns are having an impact on RIA mergers and acquisitions. In fact, worries about possible changes to the U.S. tax code have pushed the number of RIA mergers and acquisitions in the third quarter to record highs. That’s right, a week before the bell has even rung on Q3, we have a new all-time quarterly record, according to DeVoe & Co.

There have already been 36 transactions in Q3, which breaks the previous record of 35 that was just set back in Q1 2020 (you know, that time before the coronavirus changed everything). “High valuations, attractive deal structures, and concerns about a potential change in the tax code should [Joe] Biden win have all contributed to the accelerating activity,” reported the firm. 

In 2019, a total of 132 transactions took place across the RIA M&A landscape. And after Q3’s record breaking number, 2020 looks set “to be the seventh consecutive year of record RIA M&A activity,” according to DeVoe & Co, even after deals screeched to almost a halt during Q2.

Captrust’s acquisition of Plante Moran’s retirement business (adding $6.3 billion in assets); Kudu’s investment in Sequoia Financial Group ($4.7 billion), and CI Financial’s acquisition of Balasa Dinverno Foltz ($4.5 billion) were the biggest deals of the quarter.

DeVoe & Co. expects at least four more transactions to take place before the bell rings on Q3, which would leave things at a nice round 40.


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