RIA firms with at least $1 billion in assets under management reported annual growth rates of 9.2% in assets under management (aum)7.4% growth in revenue and 4.4% growth in number of clients, according to the Charles Schwab 2020 RIA Benchmarking Study.
Between January and early April, Schwab’s annual RIA Benchmarking Study surveyed 1,010 advisory firms, representing $1.1 trillion in AUM. Over three quarters of those firms completed the study after March 1, when the coronavirus had already ravaged markets.
For firms with at least $1 billion in AUM, top strategic initiatives remain consistent year-over-year, with acquiring new clients as the top priority, followed by leveraging technology to improve productivity, and enhancing strategic planning.
Larger firms used technology more often than their smaller counterparts and were more likely to leverage technologies to provide services to clients efficiently.
Overall, RIA firms entered 2020 from a position of strength, with robust five-year growth trends across assets under management (AUM), revenue, and clients.
A continued focus on net organic growth has helped RIAs smooth the impact of volatile markets, and most firms are even planning to hire in the next 12 months and are largely targeting talent at other RIAs.