Charles Schwab Wealth Management
Charles Schwab is an investment management platform that offers a wide range of financial planning services, from fully automated and DIY investing to personalized portfolio planning with an investment advisor. No matter which wealth management company you work with, if you have between $5 million and $500 million in liquid investable assets and are looking to grow and secure your portfolio, your future, your retirement, and the lifestyle you desire then you should request your free copy of the exclusive book, 7 Secrets to High Net Worth Investment Management, Estate, Tax and Financial Planning here. For services in wealth management at Charles Schwab, you would use their Private Client service.
Brokerage companies like Charles Schwab offer wealth management and investment management services to beginning investors just starting out, active traders, middle-income investors, and anyone else all the way up to wealthy investors and retirees.
They also offer a platform for making active trades that usually get charged a commission per trade, though not always. And they offer investment advisory services for investors in all sorts of situations. Some clients want maximum growth. Others want to protect their investments and save for retirement. Some want to minimize taxes. Others want maximized security. Some want all of this and more.
Investment management at Charles Schwab is available to investors from all income levels. It offers accounts with mutual funds that require no minimum balance, Charles Schwab Private Client accounts which serve investors with over $1 million in liquid assets, and everything in between.
In a moment, we’ll look at five aspects of Charles Schwab to help you evaluate their wealth management and investment management platform and decide if it’s a good option for you.
One advisory option is to utilize a firm like Pillar Wealth Management which serves clients who have between $5 million and $500 million in liquid assets.
One reason this is appealing to existing Schwab clients is that we utilize Charles Schwab to custody our clients’ money. What that means for existing Charles Schwab account holders is that the accounts will remain as-is, the money is accessible to you, and the links to your debit/credit cards and bank accounts all remain in place. Your cost base information and all historical details will be preserved this way while you gain a new advisor to guide you and invest your portfolio. We are merely granted access to the manage your portfolio, but within the well-functioning and trustworthy Charles Schwab platform.
This arrangement protects you. It also helps you avoid ACAT transfers (firm to firm) and IRA to IRA transfers and the such if you desire to hire a new wealth management firm.
If you want to talk to a wealth manager who has served ultra-high net worth clients for over 30 years and uses a 100% custom approach to create a plan that grows, manages, and protects your wealth, schedule a free call with one of our co-founders, Hutch Ashoo or Chris Snyder.
Who Is Charles Schwab?
Charles Schwab is one of the largest brokerage services in the world, managing several trillion dollars for their customers and clients. Many customers use Schwab’s platform to manage their own investments in stocks, bonds, commodities, futures, options, and other investment vehicles. Other clients seek professional investment management and wealth management from Charles Schwab’s team of financial advisors.
Charles Schwab Wealth Management Corporation was founded in 1971 by Charles Schwab, though under a different name the first couple years. Charles Schwab grew up in Santa Barbara and graduated from Stanford in 1959 with an economics degree, and two years later with a Masters in business administration.
He observed how most other investment companies at that time were using salesmen to pitch investment securities to customers, and most of these sales pros worked on commission. Thus, they were motivated to sell securities that maximized their own income.
Schwab broke with that approach and defined his company as one that sold equity securities at vastly discounted prices, and put the customers in charge. He still used salespeople, but he paid them hourly, not on commission.Customers could choose what they wanted to invest in, and were educated about their options with updated data and research information. They could get quotes 24 hours a day. This approach continues to define investment management at Charles Schwab today.
But at the time, this new business strategy outraged firms using the traditional approach. Undeterred, Schwab pressed forward and continued to empower customers to make their own investment choices, always emphasizing technology as a helpful aid.
The company was bought by Bank of America in 1981, but then Charles Schwab bought it back six years later and went public. In 2019, Charles Schwab acquired TD Ameritrade, and kept that company’s platform active for their customers.
Charles Schwab Planning and Investment Tools
Whether you want to make your own investment decisions, make active trades, or get portfolio management help from a Charles Schwab financial advisor, you will find a wide array of tools and services for all levels of investing when you create a Charles Schwab brokerage account.
Services for Active Investors
For active traders and investors, Schwab provides the StreetSmart Edge platform, which includes enhanced research and screening tools for mutual funds, equities, and exchange traded funds (ETFs), as well as for individual equities. StreetSmart Edge lets you narrow down your choices using 150 screening criteria, including fund performance, Morningstar category, benchmark index, asset class, and many others.
There are two other platforms in addition to StreetSmart Edge, depending on your preferences and level of experience.
Charles Schwab Mutual Fund Selection
Charles Schwab is well-known for offering robust research tools and having a very large selection of funds to choose from – over 16,000 at the moment. Of those, over 4000 charge no sales loads and no transaction fees. 500 Charles Schwab mutual funds charge expense ratios of 0.5% or less.
You can choose from equity funds, bond funds, ETFs, index funds, and many others.
To help with your research, Schwab sends you daily updates and commentary from sources like Credit Suisse, Reuters, Morningstar, and Ned Davis.
Types of Charles Schwab Accounts
You can set up all sorts of investment accounts at Charles Schwab, including 401k, Roth IRA, traditional IRA, 529 accounts, health savings accounts, SEP IRAs and solo 401k for businesses and entrepreneurs, trusts, charitable accounts, and many more.
Charles Schwab Online and Mobile
Schwab offers a well-reviewed mobile app that has all the same features as their website. In fact, JD Power ranked it the top mobile app for investors in 2019.
Their online platform allows you to login to your Charles Schwab account from anywhere and at any time, and manage your investments however you want.
Charles Schwab Customer Service
Schwab offers customer service all day, every day. You can reach a live person 24/7. They include a security guarantee that covers losses in the event of unauthorized activity, and they allow you to trade equities in 12 different currencies and the markets they align with.
Charles Schwab’s customer service was rated #1 among brokerage services in 2020 by Investor’s Business Daily.
This is one reason Pillar Wealth Management chose to use Schwab as one of our custodial account options. They have great service, a great platform, and a wide selection of choices for all types of investors.
Doing it yourself can be challenging and time-consuming though, which is why our clients have appreciated the extra attention, customized planning, and wealth management expertise that we offer them in addition to everything on Schwab’s impressive platform.
Find out how we help high net worth families protect and grow their wealth – schedule a free introductory call with a wealth manager.
Charles Schwab Banking
Schwab also has over 300 branch locations, more than any other brokerage firm. You can find a Charles Schwab location near you in most major cities.
Charles Schwab Investment Advisory Services
When setting up a Charles Schwab brokerage account, you will have several options, one of which is to work with an advisor. If you decide you want a financial advisor, there are several types of advisory services to choose from as well.
Here’s a quick rundown of some of Schwab’s main advisory services.
Your Charles Schwab financial advisor doesn’t have to be a real person. They offer an automated advisory service that builds a portfolio, monitors it, harvests your tax losses to offset investment gains, and rebalances your investments over time using low-cost exchange traded funds.
It also updates you on issues like taxes and estate planning, as they become relevant to your situation. The automated service includes a mobile app, and there are no advisory fees or commissions.
There is a $5000 minimum to use Schwab’s robo-advisor service.
For high net worth investors, robo-advisors aren’t usually able to deliver the personalized service you need to maximize your growth and long term wealth security. For that, you should seek help from a live financial advisor. And Pillar Wealth Management is a great option for investors with over $5 million in liquid assets. See what we have to offer – schedule a free call with a wealth manager.
Dedicated Charles Schwab Financial Advisor
Schwab has a large team of financial consultants, many of whom only serve clients who have $1 million or more in liquid assets. This service is called Charles Schwab Private Client. We’ll share more information about this service in a moment.
Blend of Automated and Live Financial Advisors
If you like the concept of automated investment management from Charles Schwab, but also want the option to discuss strategies, ideas, and how to respond to specific situations that come up, you might prefer their blended financial planning service.
Here, you get help from a Certified Financial Planner (CFP) when you want it. The CFP also develops an investment plan to help reach your goals, and the automated system does the work to help make it happen.
This service requires a $25,000 investment minimum, and comes with a $300 one-time planning fee as well as a monthly fee.
Charles Schwab Financial Advisor Network
Schwab is also willing to refer you to a local, independent financial advisor if you want more personalized attention. There are no Charles Schwab fees for this service, but it does require a $500,000 minimum investment, and the advisor you get referred to will charge their own set of fees.
We need to mention here that once you step out and start looking for your own financial advisor, there is a lot more to consider than just how great the online platform is. This person will be entrusted with your investments and long term financial security.
To help make sure you get the most out of your investments, we produced a free guide, 7 Secrets to High Net Worth Investment Management, Estate, Tax and Financial Planning. This guide reveals incredible insights into the unique challenges faced by ultra high net worth investors, which only increase in importance and in risk as you get older and enter into retirement.
It is the single best resource we have ever produced, and you can have it free. Get the 7 Secrets here.
Schwab Managed Portfolios
This service is for investors who want a diversified portfolio built from Charles Schwab ETFs that is managed by Schwab’s financial advisors. It requires a $25,000 minimum.
Schwab Managed Account Select
If you want a separate account for securities like stocks and bonds that will be managed by a professional asset management firm, this service might be a good option to look at. It requires a $100,000 minimum investment.
And there are several more options, including one with a $250,000 minimum, and several more $100,000 options that focus on things like tax efficiency, reliable retirement income, bond ladders, and global investment strategies.
Within all these services, you can create individual investment accounts, joint brokerage accounts, IRAs of all varieties, 401k accounts, rollovers, trusts, and custodial accounts, which is what Pillar Wealth Management uses for our clients.
The right service for you depends on your financial situation, your net worth, your short and long term goals including estate plans and tax minimization, and the lifestyle you desire.
Our free guide will be of profound help in helping you figure out what you really want, and what it takes to get there. It will also steer you clear from big mistakes and pitfalls that often cause unnecessary angst and regret for high net worth families and individuals. Use the 7 Secrets to High Net Worth Investment Management, Estate, Tax and Financial Planning to help secure your finances for life.
Wealth Management from Charles Schwab Private Client
Charles Schwab Private Client is their wealth management service, created for investors who have over $1 million ready to invest.
This service comes with a team of people to serve you in a variety of ways. The team includes:
• Financial consultant – manages your relationship with Schwab
• Private financial advisor – develops your plan and your wealth strategy, making recommendations and helping you gain access to specialists in fields such as tax planning
• Senior associate private client advisor – helps execute your strategy
• Schwab Private Client customer service team – these people support your requests and Charles Schwab account maintenance needs
Together, this team recommends a strategy and helps you execute and adjust it, but you always remain in control. You have the final say about whether to act on their recommendations, and you can use all the data, resources, and in-depth reporting you’ll receive as a Charles Schwab private client.
Charles Schwab’s fee for their Private Client service is 0.8% of your assets under management, and that fee decreases at higher levels of investments.
What Types of Clients Does Schwab Private Client Accept?
Charles Schwab Private Client will accept pretty much any investor as long as they have over $1 million to invest.
If you like Schwab or already have an account with them, but want to work with Pillar Wealth Management too, you can! As an investment advisory firm and a fiduciary, we can begin managing your Charles Schwab accounts on your behalf, but you will retain control of the accounts and any big decisions that need to be made. And, the account doesn’t move or change. The number remains the same, the links to other accounts and credit cards don’t change.
This is a common process when you work with a wealth management firm who uses Charles Schwab accounts as a custodian.
Is Schwab a Fiduciary?
None of the major brokerage firms are fiduciaries, because that type of service generally requires an independent specialist who knows more than just your basic goals and your investment management plan.
A fiduciary operates in such a way that all their recommendations are meant to be aligned with your best interests. Thus, to truly live up to the fiduciary standard, a wealth manager needs to know your situation well enough so they can customize their financial plan to you. They also can’t be beholden to the needs of a larger company.
Charles Schwab’s in-house advisors therefore are not fiduciaries, but many of the advisors they refer clients to in their Financial Advisor Network, mentioned earlier, are fiduciaries. Schwabextols the virtues and benefits of what those fiduciary advisors can provide, even in their own marketing.
Pillar Wealth Management’s financial advisors are Registered Investment Advisors who act as fiduciaries for all our clients. So when we tell you that we custody many of our clients’ accounts at Charles Schwab, that tells you the high regard in which we hold their platform.
Our clients love the customized service and proprietary investment process we have created, in addition to receiving all the benefits that come with a Charles Schwab account.
Want to see what Pillar’s proprietary investment process recommends for your investments, and how it can give you complete peace of mind about your financial security?
Schedule a free conversation with one of our wealth managers, both of whom have over 30 years of experience serving ultra-high net worth individuals and families.
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