Barron's magazine names state's best financial advisers

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Indiana boasts 15 of the nation’s top 1,000 financial advisers, according to Barron’s. The majority of them work for Merrill Lynch, and all but two live in Indianapolis. The financial publication ranks Thomas Buck, 56, of Indianapolis, the state’s best. He manages $875 million for Merrill Lynch.

Tom Buck mug Buck

In its Feb. 22 edition, Barron’s named and ranked the financial advisers it considers the cream of the crop in all 50 states. To be considered, advisers were required to have at least seven years of financial services experience and to have worked for their current firm at least a year.

Merrill Lynch led Indiana, with nine top advisers. It also had the most advisers on the total list, by a long stretch, with 239. Wachovia Securities had the second-most among the top 1,000, with 135; followed by Smith Barney with 122; Morgan Stanley with 121; and UBS, with 118.

Barron’s measured the advisers in terms of how much money they have under management, their return on assets, their client satisfaction and retention, their regulatory compliance, and their community involvement. Here’s how the full list broke down:

1. Thomas Buck, Merrill Lynch, Indianapolis: $875 million in total assets

2. Martin Gregor, Merrill Lynch, Indianapolis: $1.1 billion in total assets

3. Eric Payne, Merrill Lynch, Indianapolis: $700 million in total assets

4. Chris Cooke, Wells Fargo Advisers, Indianapolis: $1.1 billion in total assets

5. Brian Cooke, Wells Fargo Advisers, Indianapolis: $1.1 billion in total assets

6. Richard Searles, Merrill Lynch, Indianapolis: $587 million in assets

7. William Craig Dobbs, Graystone Consulting, Indianapolis: $8.8 billion in total assets

8. Jonathan Klausner, UBS Financial Services, Indianapolis: $720 million in total assets

9. Carleton Evans, Merrill Lynch, Indianapolis: $348 million in total assets

10. Jim Schillaci, Merrill Lynch, Indianapolis: $180 million in total assets

11. Kevin McMullen, Merrill Lynch, Indianapolis: $262 million in total assets

12. Ron Mencias, Merrill Lynch, Indianapolis: $700 million in total assets

13. Paul Stscherban, Robert W. Baird, Mishawaka: $345 million in total assets

14. Matthew Kahn, Merrill Lynch, South Bend: $525 million in total assets

15. John Cate, Morgan Stanley Smith Barney, Indianapolis: $900 million in total assets


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