Top Private Wealth Management Firms for High Net Worth Families

There are five reasons to seek investment planning help from the best private wealth management firms, as opposed to the large publicly traded banking and investment corporations.

For those of you with over $5 million in liquid investable assets we recommend you download your free copy of this book. Those five reasons are top-level expertise, more personal attention, customized portfolio planning, no conflicts of interest, and trust.

Not all private firms live up to this standard, but the best ones do, and you can’t find anything comparable at the big companies.

You can dive deeper into the characteristics of the top wealth management firms in this definitive guide, 7 Secrets to High Net Worth Investment Management, Estate, Tax and Financial Planning.

is schwab a fiduciary

7 Secrets To High Net Worth Investment Management, Estate, Tax and Financial Planning

The insights you’ll discover from our published book will help you integrate a variety of wealth management tools with financial planning, providing guidance for your future security alongside complex financial strategies, so your human and financial capital will both flourish.

Clients frequently share with us how the knowledge gained from this book helped provide them tremendous clarity, shattering industry-pitched ideologies, while offering insight and direction in making such important financial decisions.

Pillar Wealth Management is one of the best private wealth management firms for high net worth individuals and families. We have a team of wealth managers and advisors who work intensively with clients to help them achieve their financial goals and targets in the best way possible. Using our experience of more than 30 years, in-depth knowledge, market and industry research, and dedication, we devise customized financial solutions that best cater to our high net worth clients’ needs. Click here to start chatting with our managers about your customized financial solutions.

In this blog, we’ll be discussing the difference between wealth management and private banking, services offered by the top wealth management firms, how to choose a private wealth manager, and the percentage these managers make. Let’s dive right in.

Top 10 Wealth Management Firms

Rank CompanyLocation Wealth Management
Balance Sheet
1.UBS Global Wealth ManagementSwitzerland 2,59006/30/2020
2.Edward JonesUS1,30506/30/2020
3.Credit SuisseSwitzerland1,25006/30/2020
4.Morgan Stanley Wealth ManagementUS1,23606/30/2020
5.Bank of America GWIMUS1,22006/30/2020
6.J.P. Morgan Private BankUS677.006/30/2020
7.Goldman Sachs Wealth ManagementUS558.006/30/2020
8.Charles SchwabUS506.312/31/2019
9.Citi Private BankUS500.006/30/2020
10.BNP Paribas Wealth ManagementFrance424.006/30/2020
Top Wealth Management Firms, Source Advratings
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According to Barron's, the top 10 are Gregory Vaughn, Lyon Polk, Mark T. Curtis, Brian Pfeifler, Karen McDonald, Mark Douglass, Richard Saperstein, Jeff Erdmann, Tony Gnepp, and Scott Siegel.

The best wealth management companies include big institutions such as Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs. However, the biggest firms may not be the ones that offer more personalized services.

BlackRock is the largest wealth manager globally, with $9.464 trillion in assets under management. It was founded in 1988 and has been influential in advancing ETFs.

Morgan Stanley is often ranked first. However, by doing some research, you may find that they are not the best wealth management firm for your financial needs and situation.

A private wealth firm provides financial advisory services to wealthy individuals, such as risk management and asset diversification, investment management, retirement planning, and estate planning.

Private wealth management is a segment of the finance industry. These companies provide wealth management services to individuals, businesses, and institutions.

Having a private wealth manager is worthwhile for individuals with a high net worth, lots of assets, and complex financial needs, where they pay for expert advice to grow their wealth.

Most wealth managers earn at least $70,000 per year, but they will earn a lot more if their clients are ultra-wealthy, since their compensation is tied to the value of the client’s assets.

Generally, top private wealth managers make at least $100,000 per year. They can make a lot of money if they provide services to a large number of very wealthy clients.

Typically, wealth management fees are based on the value of the assets being managed, between 0.50% and 3%. Wealth managers may charge for specific services such as preparing an estate plan.

What is the Difference Between Private Banking and Wealth Management?

What is the Difference Between Private Banking and Wealth Management?

  1. Expertise
  2. Services
  3. Clientele
  4. Conflict of Interest
  5. Dedicated Advisor

There are a lot of financial institutions out there for high net worth individuals. It can be hard to find the top wealth management firms, and you might find yourself asking, what is private banking and wealth management? What is the difference between the two? Well, here are a few differences.

1. Expertise

Technically, both financial institutions offer almost the same services. Both places provide banking, investment management, retirement planning, and other financial services. The difference lies in the expertise in those services. While private banks offer services, such as retirement planning and risk management, their expertise does not lie in these services. Their expertise lies in banking services primarily.

In comparison, wealth management firms have much more experience and expertise in these services. Wealth managers, in particular at the top wealth management firms, know everything there is to know about these services and provide them to high net worth individuals for years. Therefore, if you’re managing your wealth and assets by yourself or through someone else already and simply need highly specialized banking services, you’ll do fine with a private bank.

However, if you want more holistic and comprehensive wealth management with wealth managers at the top wealth management firms, who are at the top of their profession and carry extensive knowledge and experience, you need a wealth management firm. The top wealth management firms don’t focus only on short-term performance but have a much longer future outlook. Learn about why this is important from our complete guide on improving portfolio performance.

2. Services

You won’t necessarily find all the services you require at one bank. Some might offer just retirement planning services, while some might offer only estate planning. Going to several different banks for different financial services will not only increase your costs but also make managing your wealth that much more inefficient.

With the top wealth management firms, you can get all investment management advice plus wealth management advice and services in one place. You won’t need to run around to different places, and your wealth manager will be able to develop more coordinated strategies that take into account all your assets and plans.

3. Clientele

Private banks and wealth management firms also deal with a different set of clienteles. The top wealth management firms are usually limited to high net worth and ultra-high net worth individuals and families with $5 million to $500 million in liquid assets. This is because these people require a much higher and complicated set of services as they have much more wealth and diverse assets that need to be strategically handled.

On the other hand, private banks deal with everyone. Even if they provide some exclusive wealth management services, they have a much lower minimum amount of around six figures. As a result, they don’t have that expertise in handling and providing the best user experience for high net worth clients.

4. Conflict of Interest

Unlike the top wealth management firms, private banks tend to have a conflict of interest with their clients. While they do provide various services that are meant to help their clients, ultimately, they are looking out for their own shareholders and profits. Therefore, any suggestions or recommendations they make are intended to help their bottom line more than your financial goals. Similarly, they might avoid anything that is good for you but risky for them.

Comparatively, the top wealth management firms have no conflict of interest with their clients. This allows them to work solely for their clients, dedicate all their efforts to serving their needs, and disclose all relevant information. That is one of the warning signs you need to be aware of, and you can refer to our ultimate guide on choosing a financial advisor for it.

5. Dedicated Advisor

High net worth individuals also need dedicated financial advisors who can properly understand their unique financial situation, their financial needs, and goals, and then recommend appropriate strategies and solutions. This is possible when the advisor builds a strong rapport with the client and is actively involved in their case from the very beginning, for example, at the top wealth management firms.

This is usually not possible in private banks such as Citi private bank, Bank of America private, JP Morgan private bank, Wells Fargo, Deutsche Bank, or any other private bank out there. While they do assign a dedicated advisor or some personal employee to look after your needs, they don’t always last long. Since private banks tend to have a high turnover rate, your dedicated advisor might leave that bank for another, and you’ll have to start all over with a new advisor. This can be quite inconvenient and inefficient. With the top wealth management firms, you can expect the same wealth manager to stick with you from the first day till even after you’re gone.

6 Services Offered by Top Private Wealth Management Firms

6 Services Offered by Top Private Wealth Management Firms

  1. Financial Planning
  2. Investment Management
  3. Risk Management
  4. Retirement Planning
  5. Estate Planning
  6. Tax Planning

Even besides all their dedicated service and expertise, there are tons of reasons why the top wealth management firms are crucial for high net worth individuals. Here are some of the services that they offer.

1. Financial Planning

Private wealth management firms can help you with holistic financial planning. This is extremely important for high net worth individuals as a carefully thought-out financial plan can help give direction to your financial decisions and strategies. With the help of a financial plan, the top wealth management firms can ensure that you stay on track to meet all your goals in the shortest time possible. Click here to book a consultation about your financial plan with our experienced managers.

2. Investment Management

Investments and asset portfolios play a huge role in helping high net worth individuals achieve their targets and grow their wealth in a sustainable way. However, investment management is not easy. There are various products and securities to invest in, numerous ways to allocate your assets, and most importantly, many ways to align your portfolio growth strategies with your other long-term goals. Only the top wealth management firms can help devise the best investment and portfolio growth strategy for you and provide the long-term benefits such as Pillar Wealth Management.

A German proverb says that “Starting is surely easy as always, but to be tenacious in providing the best is an art.” and that is what Pillar Wealth Management aims for your success from the very start. Indeed, there are many firms out there, such as Credit Suisse global wealth investment management, Morgan Stanley wealth management, Merrill Lynch, and others, but are they able to give you the best experience and results in wealth management?

We doubt that, especially if you are high net-worth individuals with $5 million to $500 million in liquid assets, you need to partner with the virtuoso because you deserve to receive the best wealth management services from the top wealth management firms and achieve the best results for your prosperity, investment, and the other financial fields. Suppose you are a high net-worth individual with $5 million to $500 million in liquid assets. Pillar Wealth Management is one of the top wealth management firms in this case with the years of experience in handling wealth management for high net-worth individuals. To provide clients with the best services while being fully dedicated is a must for us.

3. Risk Management

While high net worth individuals and families have a lot to gain with their vast amount of wealth and assets, they also have a lot to lose. Any sudden critical illness or even market volatility can leave the most affluent individuals bankrupt. That’s why they need to prepare beforehand, and that’s where the top wealth management firms can help.

They diversify your assets, set up insurance plans, and take other precautionary measures to protect all your wealth. For more insights on how to protect your wealth, order a free copy of our book, The Art of Protecting Ultra-High Net Worth Portfolios and Estates – Strategies for Families Worth $25 million to $500 million.

4. Retirement Planning

Contrary to popular belief, retirement planning should start as early as possible. More importantly, you need to know exactly what your retirement goals are to start planning for it early and adopting the right strategy. The top wealth management firms can help in this regard by understanding your precise retirement needs and creating a customized plan for you accordingly.

5. Estate Planning

The top wealth management firms also assist with estate planning. For high net worth as well as ultra-high net worth individuals, it’s important that they achieve financial security for themselves as well as their families after they’re gone. Therefore, they need to ensure that they divide and distribute their assets to their beneficiaries properly. Without guidance from wealth managers, this can be quite a long and complicated process. Learn about what else a wealth manager can do for you from our guide on choosing a financial advisor for investors worth $10 million or more.

6. Tax Planning

This can apply to anyone, but for high net worth individuals, anything that is a big drain on their wealth is a huge concern. And most often, this comes in the form of taxes. If they don’t have someone with the right skills and experience managing their wealth, they will find themselves constantly owing more and more in taxes. The top wealth management firms have the right advisors for these needs.

While it’s true that you can’t avoid taxes entirely, with some smart thinking, you can minimize your tax liability, and that’s exactly what the top wealth management firms do. At Pillar Wealth Management, our managers have more than 30 years of experience in minimizing tax and other expenses for clients. If you’re having a similar problem, click here to get in touch with our managers today.

3 Ways How to Choose a Private Wealth Manager?

3 Ways How to Choose a Private Wealth Manager?

It’s not just about choosing any wealth manager at one of the top wealth management firms. Rather, you need the best wealth manager that is right for you. Now the question arises, how do I choose a private wealth manager? Here are a few things you can evaluate a wealth manager on and decide if they are right for you.

1. Experience

You should do a complete background check before choosing a wealth manager at one of the top wealth management firms. After all, you will be trusting them to make all the financial decisions regarding your wealth. Therefore, you need to see if they have enough experience, credentials, and certifications, what their record is like, etc.

2. Fiduciary Duty

A fiduciary duty is also essential as it will ensure that they are working just for you and not for their own needs. This will also ensure that they always keep you in the loop, disclose all important information, and help you make the best financial decisions.

3. Customized Plan

You should choose the wealth manager that spends time understanding your needs and financial situation and creates a customized financial plan accordingly.

What Percentage Do Wealth Managers Make?

Most wealth managers charge a flat fee on the amount of Assets Under Management (AUM). The exact percentage varies from manager to manager. It depends on various factors, such as their management approach. An active money manager charges a higher percentage than a passive money manager. You can learn about why that makes such a difference from our guide on maximizing portfolio growth strategies for high net worth individuals. On average, most wealth managers charge around 1%. You can get in touch with Pillar Wealth Management in several top cities in the United States, such as San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, Atlanta, Chicago, Denver, and Houston.

5 Tips for Choosing a Wealth Management Firm       

Working with a wealth management firm will provide you with the guidance and motivation you need to execute a financial plan to meet your short- and long-term financial goals. Financial planning is the key to wealth management as it defines the investor’s goals and the strategies for achieving those goals.

A wealth management firm advises the client on making investments, purchasing assets, and developing the best risk and asset diversification approach to investing for the client.

With the help of a wealth management advisor, the client becomes better able to manage their finances, including budgeting, eliminating debt, and planning for retirement.

A wealth management firm also assists its clients with tax minimization and estate planning.

Because wealth management involves a comprehensive approach to financial planning, and different firms operate differently, finding the right firm can be daunting.

Here are five tips to help you choose a wealth management firm.

1. Determine who is the firm’s ideal client

Different wealth management firms will cater to different sets of clients. While all firms provide many of the same financial services, they may concentrate more on some products or clients than others. Some may focus on institutional investors; some may be more successful in selling mutual funds or ETFs than advising clients on real estate investment funds.

So, if you find a firm you would like to work with, be sure to have a conversation about the firm’s ideal client.

2. Identify the services the firm offers

When considering hiring a wealth manager, make sure the advisor has the background and experience in the services that you need, such as selling a business or creating a trust fund for your grandchildren.

3. Study the firm’s compensation schedule

As with any product or service, you’ll want to know how much wealth management services will cost. Ask questions about fees and how they are calculated. Do these advisors get paid commissions or markup? This will influence how they work with you. You need to feel that the price is worth the earnings you might expect.

4. Identify the advisor’s availability

Your advisor should be available to answer your questions and respond to your concerns about your investments. Ask how often they’ll report on your portfolio’s performance and how responsive they will be to an email message or phone call.

5. Do a background check

A financial advisor who is authorized to make stock trades must be registered with the SEC, so check out their record on the SEC website. A firm that employs brokers will have a record with the SEC as well. Check them out with the Better Business Bureau too. Read the fine print in the firm’s disclosure statements to get a feel for its investment philosophy.

Final Words

Top Private Wealth Management Firms

There are a lot of financial institutions and, more specifically, many top wealth management firms out there. However, if you really want to grow your wealth efficiently while meeting all your short- and long-term goals and minimizing any risks and expenses, you need a top private wealth management firm. Because you will be trusting them to make all the financial decisions regarding your wealth. Therefore, you need to see if they have enough experience, credentials, and certifications, what their record is like, etc.Pillar Wealth Management is a 100% fee-only wealth management firm.

We offer fiduciary services to all our clients and are obsessed with helping them achieve all their financial goals. Our services include investment management, retirement planning, and tax planning to provide comprehensive and holistic wealth management to investors with $5 million to $500 million in liquid assets. Click here to book a consultation session with one of our experienced advisors today.


To be 100% transparent, we published this page to help filter through the mass influx of prospects, who come to us through our website and referrals, to gain only a handful of the right types of new clients who wish to engage us.

We enjoy working with high net worth and ultra-high net worth investors and families who want what we call financial serenity – the feeling that comes when you know your finances and the lifestyle you desire have been secured for life, and that you don’t have to do any of the work to manage and maintain it because you hired a trusted advisor to take care of everything.

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