Updated on Friday, August 7, 2020
Cerity Partners, LLC is a registered investment advisory firm with 210 employees across seven states. The firm serves individuals and high net worth individuals, as well as pension and profit-sharing plans, charitable organizations and other businesses. In addition to investment management, the firm provides financial planning, estate planning, tax preparation, risk management and services for couples, family offices and business owners. The firm has nearly $25 billion in assets under management (AUM).
All information included in this profile is accurate as of August 7, 2020. For more information, please consult Cerity Partnersâ€™ website.
|Assets under management: $24,682,540,139|
|Minimum investment: $2 million|
|Fee structure: A percentage of AUM; hourly fees; fixed fees, performance-based fees|
|Headquarters:||333 Madison Avenue
New York NY 10017
Cerity Partners is a private-equity backed, full-service wealth management firm headquartered in New York City. Former Deutsche Bank managing director and current firm president Kurt Miscinski co-founded Cerity Partners â€” then called HPM Partners â€” in 2009, with backing from Emigrant Bank and its chairman Howard P. Milstein.
In 2018, the private equity firm Lightyear Capital purchased Emigrant Bankâ€™s majority stake in the wealth management firm, and the following year HPM Partners changed its name to Cerity Partners. In recent years, the firm has grown quickly via acquisitions.
Cerity Partners now has 210 employees, more than 100 of whom serve in investment advisory roles. It has offices in California, Colorado, Illinois, Michigan, New York, Ohio and Texas.
Cerity Partners offers services to individuals, business and nonprofits. It also has a large business working with pension and profit-sharing plans.
The firm typically requires a minimum portfolio balance of $2 million, but it counts both individuals and high net worth individuals as clients, with its current individual client base fairly evenly divided between the two groups. (For reference, the SEC defines high net worth individuals as those with at least $750,000 under management or a net worth of more than $1.5 million.)
Cerity Partners offers a breadth of services to these individuals, including those tailored to corporate executives, family offices, business owners and couples.
Cerity Partners is a full-service firm, offering investment advisory services, wealth planning, tax preparation and planning, executive financial counseling and retirement plan services. The firm takes a holistic approach to financial planning, examining a clientâ€™s entire financial picture and goals to create an individualized plan and a customized investment strategy that complements it.
Here is a full list of services the firm can provide:
Cerity Partners uses modern portfolio theory, which focuses more on asset allocation than on individual investments, to craft individualized portfolios for its clients. Portfolios are created based on an investment profile â€” ranging from conservative to aggressive â€” created for each client.
Client portfolios can contain a mix of six asset classes and 16 sub-asset classes, including:
In addition, the firm offers a supplemental Special Opportunities strategy, which may include frequent trading to take advantage of time-sensitive, short-term opportunities, including macroeconomic opportunities, market technical opportunities and stock-specific opportunities.
Cerity Partnerâ€™s standard fee for its wealth management services is typically 1.25% of assets under management, with a minimum annual fee of $25,000. This fee includes all of the firmâ€™s services, though occasionally the firm also charges a fixed retainer for financial planning, taxes or other services, depending on the extent of the services provided. Clients will also be separately responsible for third-party charges, such as transaction fees via custodians or brokers.
In some cases, the firm will charge performance-based fees as well. Those fees reflect individual negotiations with the clients who will pay them.
Cerity Partners does not have any disciplinary disclosures on its record. All registered investment advisors must disclose any civil, regulatory or criminal events related to the firm, its employees or its affiliates in its Form ADV, paperwork filed with the SEC.
Investors interested in working with Cerity Partners can reach out directly to its local office or fill out this online form. The firm requests basic contact information and offers the option to include a message.
Cerity Partners takes a holistic, discussion-based approach to its services, with multiple advisors working together to assist clients with all facets of their finances. Advisors work with clients to create a comprehensive financial plan, and then monitor and adjust the plan as necessary. Advisors will also create a personal Investment Policy Statement, which is then used to build and manage the clientâ€™s portfolio.
While clients can reach out to Cerity Partners at any time to discuss their needs or objectives, the firm will contact all clients at least once per year to discuss the performance of their portfolio and talk about potential changes.
Cerity Partners may be a good choice for you if you have at least $2 million to invest and want additional services, such as estate and gift planning or tax preparation. Business owners, multi-generational family offices and couples in transition may also benefit from the expertise that Cerity Partners has working with clients like them.
Those with lower account balances, or who want a local advisor and donâ€™t live in one of the seven states where the Cerity Partners has offices, may be better served by another firm. When selecting a financial advisor, itâ€™s always important to ask questions about their services and to compare multiple options to make sure you find someone who is a good fit for you.