Review of Moneta Group Investment Advisors 2021

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Updated on Thursday, August 12, 2021

Based in St. Louis, Moneta Group Investment Advisors provides portfolio management and financial planning services, working with individuals and families as well as institutions. The employee-owned firm operates on a fee-only basis, and notably has no minimum investment requirement. That said, the bulk of its clients are high net worth individuals.

The bottom line: With four locations across the U.S., Moneta Group Investment Advisors is focused on providing financial management to both individual and institutional investors.

  • Offers financial planning services
  • Requires no set account minimum
  • Has an opaque fee structure
Assets under management: $27,417,700,987
Minimum investment: No minimum
Individual investor to advisor ratio: 37:1
Fee structure: A percentage of AUM, hourly charges, fixed fees
Headquarters: 100 S. Brentwood Blvd.
St. Louis, MO 63105
Website:www.monetagroup.com
Phone: 314-726-2300

All information included in this profile is accurate as of August 5, 2021. For more information, please consult Moneta Group Investment Advisors’ website.

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Overview of Moneta Group Investment Advisors

Moneta Group Investment Advisors is a portfolio and wealth management firm that celebrated its 150th anniversary in 2019. The firm traces its roots back to the 1869 foundation of the Home Life Insurance Company.

Over time, the company has gone through a series of rebrands and expansions, finally adopting the name Moneta Group in 1988. Today, the firm is wholly employee-owned. Moneta has close to 400 employees, around 140 of whom are investment advisers.

Moneta Group Investment Advisors’ pros

  • No account balance minimum: Moneta does not require a minimum account balance for its clients to establish an account, making the firm accessible to investors of all levels.
  • Personalized attention and numerous services: In general, Moneta Group focuses on providing personal attention and tailored management to its clients. The firm also can serve as a one-stop-shop for money management, as it offers a wide range of services, from comprehensive financial planning to family office services to estate management.
  • Recognition as an independent RIA: Barron’s ranked Moneta No. 5 on its 2019 list of Top RIA Firms in the country, and No. 10 in 2020. The firm was also recognized for seven straight years as a top workplace in St. Louis, and was named among the “Top Workplaces USA” award winners for 2021. It also was named as one of the best places to work for financial advisors by Investment News.

Moneta Group Investment Advisors’ cons

  • Fees aren’t readily available: With Moneta Group, you won’t know what your fees will be until you negotiate with the partner team. This may make it hard to comparison shop and to get an idea ahead of time how much you may pay for Moneta’s services.
  • Some products may have account minimums: Even though Moneta doesn’t impose an account minimum, some of the third-party programs it uses might, possibly limiting access to certain tools and products.
  • Limited geographic footprint: While Moneta has jurisdiction across several states, there are only four physical offices. For clients who prefer to see advisors in person but do not live near an office, this may be a negative.

What types of clients does Moneta Group Investment Advisors serve?

The bulk of Moneta Group’s clients are high net worth individuals and families and trusts and estates, which the firm refers to as “Family CFOs.” For reference, the SEC defines a high net worth individual as someone with at least $750,000 under management or a net worth of at least $1.5 million. The firm does serve a number of individual investors who do not meet this threshold, as well as a range of institutional investors.

Moneta Group requires no account minimums for its own clients. However, some of the third-party investment management partners Moneta works with, such as Charles Schwab, may have their own account minimums.

Services offered by Moneta Group Investment Advisors

Moneta Group Investment Advisors offers a full suite of money management services. Its wealth management service, dubbed the Family CFO, provides a full financial management plan tailored to each client. Clients will receive investment advice as well as a range of financial planning services, with additional consulting services provided as needed. Basically, Moneta Group claims that it offers its clients all the services that a chief financial officer would offer to a company.

Additionally, the firm offers family office services to ultra-high net worth clients, providing assistance with tasks like family education, lifetime giving, tax efficiency and family mission statements. Moneta Group also provides trust services, retirement plan consulting and institutional consulting, such as for foundations and endowments.

In summary, here is the full menu of services provided by Moneta Group:

  • Wealth management
    • Investment advice
    • Coaching education
    • Philanthropy
    • Savings planning
    • Life transition planning
    • Asset protection
    • Estate planning
  • Family office services
    • Tax efficiency
    • Education
    • Lifetime giving
    • Tailored investment strategies
    • Charitable strategies and gifting
    • Bill paying, family financial reporting, concierge services, etc.
    • Financial advocacy
    • Creation of family mission statements
  • Trust services
  • Retirement plan consulting
  • Institutional consulting

How Moneta Group Investment Advisors invests your money

Moneta Group Investment Partners sets each client up with a partner-led team, which reviews your goals and risk tolerance. This team is then responsible for putting together an investing plan and portfolio, which includes a review of performance expectations and economic and tax considerations.

This process delivers each client a unique investment portfolio, closely tailored to their needs. The partner team periodically reviews the portfolio, your ongoing situation and your changing financial goals, and then adjusts your investment allocations as needed.

Moneta uses both discretionary and non-discretionary approaches. Under the discretionary approach, Moneta makes some investment choices without client approval; however, it’s possible to place restrictions on the types of investments and strategies that can be used. Under the non-discretionary approach, the client signs off on all investment decisions. Partner Teams work with clients to determine the best approach and figure out if it makes sense to use discretionary or non-discretionary management, or a combination of the two.

When building portfolios, Moneta Group focuses on three main asset classes:

  • Fixed income: These instruments, which include bonds, bond funds and certificates of deposit (CDs), are intended to provide liquidity and reduce market risk in the portfolio.
  • Equities: The equities portion of a portfolio is focused on adding growth to the mix while minimizing costs.
  • Alternative investments: Alternative investments, such as limited partnerships and real estate investment trusts (REITs), may be added as appropriate for some clients in an attempt to increase diversification or returns, or achieve other objectives.

The firm also uses third parties to manage some of its investments, including Schwab Institutional Intelligent Portfolios. However, even though Moneta uses Schwab, the program is based on strategies put together by Moneta, and managed by Moneta.

Fees Moneta Group Investment Advisors charges for its services

Rather than publishing a set fee schedule, Moneta Group Investment Advisors charges fees on a client-by-client basis. In general, the firm’s fees are based on a percentage of assets under management. Rates typically range from 0.50% to 1.00%, though they can be higher. Moneta Group states that fees generally won’t exceed 2%, however.

Other costs clients may incur include additional fees for concierge services, such as bill pay and money management. Clients are also responsible for the fees charged by third-party brokers as well as expense ratios and other investment-related fees.

Moneta Group Investment Advisors disciplinary disclosures

Moneta Group has no disciplinary disclosures. As an SEC-registered investment advisor, Moneta Group is required to disclose on its Form ADV any and all material facts regarding legal action or disciplinary events that could impact a client’s evaluation of the firm or the integrity of its team.

For more information, visit Moneta Group Investment Advisor’s IAPD page.

Moneta Group Investment Advisors onboarding process

If you’re interested in working with Moneta Group Investment Advisors, the first step is contacting the firm. You can do so by filling out an online form on the firm’s website, which asks for basic information like your name, address and contact information, as well as a brief message.

From there, you’ll have a discussion about the services you want and get assigned a Partner Team. This team will hold a series of meetings to get a feel for your investment goals and ongoing financial objectives, which will inform the creation of a comprehensive plan that may address the following areas:

  • Financial management
  • Financial independence
  • Tax planning
  • Investment planning
  • Estate planning
  • Business succession planning
  • Risk management

Client accounts are reviewed at least annually, and more frequent reviews can be made at the client’s request. The Partner Team might also bring different items to a client’s attention, based on what’s going on and what they hope to accomplish in the future.

Where Moneta Group Investment Advisors is located

Moneta Group has offices in the following cities:

  • St. Louis
  • Mission Woods, Kansas
  • Denver
  • Worcester, Massachusetts

Is Moneta Group Investment Advisors right for you?

For those who are looking for a full-service money management company, Moneta Group might be a good choice. Those who have a high net worth or have family office and succession issues might also benefit from Moneta Group.

However, the firm’s fee structure is somewhat opaque and could vary widely, depending on your total assets under management and a variety of other options and considerations. While there aren’t account minimums, some of the third parties used to manage portfolios might have their own minimums. And if you don’t have a high net worth, you might not benefit from the full functionality of this firm. Be sure to research multiple firms to ensure you find the right advisor for you.

The “Find a Financial Advisor” links contained in this article will direct you to webpages devoted to MagnifyMoney Advisor (“MMA”). After completing a brief questionnaire, you will be matched with certain financial advisers who participate in MMA’s referral program, which may or may not include the investment advisers discussed.