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LPL vs. Commonwealth

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Apr 11, 2007 6:44 pm

For anyone who is interested, may we continue to explore and increase our comparative understanding. Any need to mention, please stay on topic and professional?

A few more thoughts about LPL:

(Last post on previous thread)

Speaking to integrity, I can say with a pretty good level of certainty that unlike some members of management at my old shop, LPL has never lied to me or tried to gloss over a sensitive subject (such as their potential IPO).

Self clearing (LPL) vs. National Financial (Commonwealth): does anyone have personal experience with this making any difference at a solo office?

Apr 12, 2007 9:11 pm

Here's the least from my perspective. 

Let's agree both firms are very good at what they do.  Commonwealth may be percieved as having a slightly higher quality advisor force.  This is evident from production minimums at Commonwealth vs no min at LPL.  Numbers bear this out too but both are great firms.

Both have top notch tech.  Slight edge could go to LPL.  Both firms have plenty of product.  Payout grid a little higher at LPL. 

The real difference comes down to two things.  First if you are a financial planner who does planning LPL's planning procedure is not good and needs to be changed for any real planner to consider them. Having an accounts recievable until plans are delivered really makes no sense. Commonwealth comes closest to true retainer fee though you can't call it a retainer.

Even if the above is not correct or you don't do planning then it comes down to this.  If you like the feel of a big company behind you and a corporate feel, but still very independant then LPL is the place for you. 

If you value a small town feel where everyone knows your name at the corporate office and your voice no matter how little has a say in how things are developed than Commonwealth is the place for you.

I went through the same agony as you.  In the end as you will find out it comes down to what you and only you value.  There is no better just different.  Visit both, go with your gut instinct and you will be fine.

Apr 12, 2007 9:37 pm

I thought LPL had minimums?

Apr 12, 2007 9:43 pm

 Ohio rocks.

Apr 12, 2007 9:50 pm

Commonwealth has (reduced?) tech fee to $150 + research package fee, increased payout of AUM over 25m (not stepped through like LPL) to 90% minus 12.5% admin. THAT looks pretty good. They'll apparently match LPL's transition payment to handle account closing fees ( 6-7%), based on your trail GDC.

Tech has improved document imaging at the remote office & eliminated need to forward paperwork on simple investment apps, etc.

Any other facts to list, anyone?

Apr 13, 2007 4:33 am

[quote=bXpress]I thought LPL had minimums?[/quote]

They have minimums to be your own OSJ(registered principal/branch manager, etc.).

They have minimums if you want to be in a satellite location that is remote from your OSJ.

But if you can find an OSJ who will take you on and supervise you in
branch with low production, there is no minimum.  The side of the
story that I am seeing(first-hand AND second-hand) that this doesn’t
tell you is that once an OSJ has a reasonably succesful book of their
own and it is growing, they have little patience for a piker who
doesn’t contribute to their bottom line and takes up their time with
nuisance questions and potential compliance issues.  So, that “no
minimum” thing may be somewhat of a red herring.

I am dealing with this myself as I calculate whether or not to bring in
a promising newbie that I’ve known for a long time…trying to figure
out if the money I make will be worth the time and energy of training
him.   I see it second hand as I watch another friend and LPL
OSJ deal with a couple of small producers in his branch who cause him
tons of grief, and he’s realizing that he could make in one productive
week what these clowns generate for him in a year.

Also, those lower average numbers at LPL don’t account for the fact
that registered sales assistants get their own production number, and
"partners" such as registered CPA’s producing jointly with an advisor
are also counted in that total.

So that’s the real story, if it helps.

Jun 26, 2011 11:29 pm

Can someone tell me what these minimums are? Thank you.

LPL has minimums to be your own OSJ(registered principal/branch manager, etc.).

LPL has  minimums if you want to be in a satellite location that is remote from your OSJ.