LPL Financial Posts Growth in Assets, Advisors

LPL reported higher revenue and adjusted profit numbers for the fourth quarter Monday, as the acquisition of an advisor network boosted assets and advisors at the firm. LPL is the parent company for LPL Financial, the country’s largest independent broker/dealer network.

LPL Investment Holdings reported higher revenue and adjusted profit numbers for the fourth quarter Monday, as the acquisition of an advisor network in 2010 boosted assets and advisors at the firm. LPL is the parent company for LPL Financial, the country’s largest independent broker/dealer network.

The fourth quarter earnings report is LPL’s first since the firm went public in November. The results were released after the close of the markets.

LPL said net new advisory assets totaled $8.5 billion for 2010, up 21.4 percent versus the prior year, while advisory assets on the firm’s fee-based platforms totaled $93 billion on Dec. 31, up 20.5 percent from a year earlier. Asset-based fees for the fourth quarter rose 21.5 percent versus the previous year.

LPL had 12,444 financial advisors at the end of the year, up 4.1 percent year over year. It added 494 net new advisors for the year, including 206 who moved their registrations over from National Retirement Partners, an independent advisor network that LPL acquired in 2010. NRP serves retirement plan sponsors and participants and offers comprehensive financial services for high-net-worth clients. LPL picked up about 3,800 clients and $564.3 million in assets in the deal.

LPL also reported growth on its hybrid RIA platform. Assets under custody reached $13.5 billion at year-end with 114 firms, compared to assets of $7.3 billion and 92 firms at the end of 2009.

LPL Investment Holdings, the parent company, reported a fourth-quarter net loss of $116.6 million, or a loss of $1.20 a share, on revenue of $820 million. For the comparable quarter a year earlier, it had net income of $18.6 million, or 19 cents a share, on revenue of $734.9 million. Excluding charges related to LPL’s initial public offering, the company had adjusted net income last quarter of $44.7 million, up 6.2 percent.

For fiscal 2010, LPL had a net loss of $56.9 million, or a loss of 64 cents a share, on revenue of $3.11 billion. For fiscal 2009, it had net income of $47.5 million, or 47 cents a share, on revenue of $2.75 billion.

Chief Executive Officer Mark Casady will discuss the results in greater detail during a conference call Tuesday at 8:30 a.m. Registered Rep. will update its earnings report after the call.

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