Review of Segall Bryant & Hamill

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Updated on Friday, July 17, 2020

Segall Bryant & Hamill, LLC is an independent investment advisory firm headquartered in Chicago with four additional locations in Denver, St. Louis, Philadelphia and Naples, Fla. The firm has 126 employees, and it oversees more than $19 billion in assets under management (AUM). The firm primarily serves individuals, with a focus on high net worth individuals, as well as institutional investors.

All information included in this profile is accurate as of July 17, 2020. For more information, please consult Segall Bryant & Hamill’s website.

Assets under management: $19,661,201,015
Minimum investment: $1,000,000
Fee structure: A percentage of AUM; fixed fees; performance-based fees
Headquarters: 540 West Madison Street, Suite 1900
Chicago, IL 60661

Overview of Segall Bryant & Hamill

Segall Bryant & Hamill was founded in 1994. The firm is principally owned by certain employees of the firm and affiliates of Thoma Bravo, LLC, another SEC-registered investment advisor, primarily through the holding company TB Lakeshore, LLC.

In 2018, Segall Bryant & Hamill finalized its acquisition of Denver Investments, a sizable employee-owned firm in Colorado. The merged entity now has 126 employees, 68 of whom perform investment advisory functions. The team manages upward of 1,800 individual accounts and close to 500 business or institutional accounts. For more information on financial advisors in the Colorado area, we have comprised a list of all our top options.

What types of clients does Segall Bryant & Hamill serve?

Segall Bryant & Hamill provides a number of services for a wide range of clients, including institutional clients — such as banks and thrift institutions, corporations, pension and profit-sharing plans, private investment funds and more — as well as individuals. The individual clients the firm caters to are high net worth, defined by the SEC as individuals with at least $750,000 under management or at least a $1.5 million net worth. However, of the firm’s current individual clients, more than half are not high net worth individuals.

The minimum individual account size at Segall Bryant & Hamill is $1 million, although the firm mentions that it may modify the minimum on a case-by-case basis.

Services offered by Segall Bryant & Hamill

Segall Bryant & Hamill offers the standard fare of financial planning and portfolio management to its individual clients.

For clients interested in financial planning, Segall Bryant & Hamill offers the service as a separate engagement, though clients will not owe an additional fee. The firm uses goals-based planning, which may include stress testing of possible scenarios in order to assess client financial objectives. Financial planning also may include retirement planning, philanthropic gift planning and tax efficiency planning.

The following is a menu of services offered by Segall Bryant & Hamill:

  • Portfolio management (mostly discretionary)
  • Financial planning/wealth management services
    • Tax considerations
    • Estate planning
    • Trust planning
    • Insurance planning
  • Selection of other advisors
  • Investment advice provider to mutual funds and collective investment trusts

How Segall Bryant & Hamill invests your money

Advisors at Segall Bryant & Hamill construct client portfolios security by security; the company calls themselves “bottom-up investors.” New clients will work with a portfolio manager to determine their portfolio’s asset allocation, which will be based on their financial objectives and goals, as well as factors like their time horizon, risk profile and income needs.

The portfolio manager will then create a diversified portfolio based on the collected information. The firm divides wealth management client portfolios into three categories: fixed income, equity and balanced, based on the investment objectives gathered from the clients.

Portfolios will consist primarily of individual stock and bond securities. Fundamental factors — such as qualitative measures like management and competitive advantage or quantitative measures like a company’s assets, equity and liabilities — are the primary focus when analyzing and investing in securities.

The company also has integrated environmental, social, and governance (ESG) factors into its research process. The company signed the United Nations’ Principles of Responsible Investment in 2017.

Fees Segall Bryant & Hamill charges for its services

Segall Bryant & Hamill’s fees are all subject to negotiation; however, the annual minimum fee for all individual account investment styles (equity, balanced and fixed income) is listed at $10,000.

The firm calculates fees based on a percentage of assets under management, with the minimum account size generally set at $1 million. Total fees will depend on factors like the size of the account, relationships to other accounts, any competitive pricing agreements or conditions at the inception of the relationship, the historical or projected nature of trading for the account and the extent of supplemental client services provided to the account. Clients will not incur an additional fee for financial planning services.

Segall Bryant & Hamill Management Fee Schedule
Equity and balancedFirst $3 million: 1.00%
Next $7 million: 0.75%
Over $10 million: 0.50%
Fixed incomeAll balances: 0.50%

Note that the rates listed in the table above do not include brokerage commissions, transaction fees and other related costs and expenses that may be incurred through portfolio management services.

Segall Bryant & Hamill notes that with some qualified clients, it has performance-based fee arrangements, which are subject to individualized negotiation with each client. Some of the firm’s funds may charge this fee as well.

Segall Bryant & Hamill highlights

  • Competitive fees: The assessed industry average fees are 1.17%, according to a 2019 study by RIA in a Box. In comparison, Segall Bryant & Hamill’s top rate is 1.00%, and, as account sizes grow, rates drop even lower. For example, an individual with $10 million to invest would pay around 0.83%, based on the fee chart outlined above. Additionally, the firm doesn’t add a separate fee for financial planning services.
  • Award-winning firm: Segall Bryant & Hamill was named a top 100 financial advisory firm by CNBC in 2019 and in 2017, a Financial Times top registered investment advisor.
  • No disclosures: The firm has operated since 1994 and has not incurred a reportable disciplinary, legal or criminal action.

Segall Bryant & Hamill downsides

  • High account minimum: With a stated $1 million minimum account size, the firm targets high net worth individuals at the exclusion of investors with less money. That said, the firm currently reports having more clients who do not qualify as high net worth individuals, so its minimum account size might be flexible, or the firm may have pivoted to a higher account minimum than it had in the past.
  • May charge performance-based fees: While not applicable to every account, Segall Bryant & Hamill does note that some clients have agreed to performance-based fee arrangements. Performance-based fees can create an incentive for advisors to recommend riskier or more speculative investments, as well as to favor these potentially higher-paying accounts when allocating investment opportunities. However, the firm states that it has procedures in place to mitigate these potential issues.
  • Potential conflict of interest related to associated mutual funds and investments: Segall Bryant & Hamill is associated with Segall Bryant & Hamill family of funds, a portfolio of 16 mutual funds across 15 asset classes. This can present a conflict of interest as advisors may be incentivized to recommend the firm’s own funds for investments.

Segall Bryant & Hamill disciplinary disclosures

Segall Bryant & Hamill does not have any disclosures, meaning it has a clean disciplinary record.

Financial advisory firms that are registered with the SEC are required to disclose all events on their Form ADV paperwork that would influence a potential client’s decision to work with the firm. These disclosures include civil, regulatory and criminal actions against the firm, its employees and its affiliates.

Segall Bryant & Hamill onboarding process

Potential clients can call the main company number or fill out the contact form found on the firm’s website to get in touch with an advisor. The form requests information such as your name, contact information, what type of investor you are and any additional comments you may have.

At the beginning of your relationship with Segall Bryant & Hamill, you will discuss your financial objectives and goals in order to create what the firm calls your financial road map. This road map includes a personalized investment policy and asset allocation approach. Your concerns — including tax, estate, trust, insurance and planning — will be taken into account while creating your plan.

Segan Bryant & Hamill considers itself a high-touch firm, which means you’ll likely have ready access to your advisor or advisor team. The company states that clients do meet regularly with a dedicated portfolio manager to review investments.

Is Segall Bryant & Hamill right for you?

As an investment advisory firm aimed at high net worth individuals as well as institutional investors, Segall Bryant & Hamill provides ready access and “high-touch” service for investors located within the range of its five offices. The company offers below-average fees for investment management and an individualized approach, rather than a model portfolio-only style.

However, high net worth investors who wish to keep most financial services with one firm might be better served by a firm that offers accountant services and a wider range of family office services. While Segall Bryant & Hamill does offer financial planning and associated services at no additional fee, it’s not as tailored to managing a full spectrum of family wealth planning services as some other firms may be.

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.