2016 RANKING OF TOP PRIVATE BANKS AND WEALTH MANGEMENT BANKS
Intro: The Top 10 Best Private Banks (What Is Private Banking?)
Private banking. Just the phrase sounds elite and probably something reserved for the ultra-wealthy, which is exactly what it is.
To answer the question of “what is private banking?” it’s important first to look at who these services extend to. Typically, it’s reserved for ultra-high-net-worth individuals, although the exact classification of what entails high net worth varies. It often ranges in definition from having at least $250,000 in assets upwards of at least $5 million.
One of the reasons private banking and private wealth management is distinctive from other types of banking is because these clients are viewed as requiring more complex and high-level financial solutions to maximize their money. Rather than simply offering deposit accounts or loans, private banks offer everything from retirement and succession planning to tax solutions designed to conserve wealth as much as possible.
Another important thing to understand when delving into the question of “what is a private bank?” is that there are often two classifications within this field of financial services, which are active and passive banking. With active private banking, clients will offer regular input and advisement to their banker or team of wealth management professionals. On the other hand, with passive private banking or wealth management, much of the decision-making and financial management is guided by the financial team of the firm.
Don't Miss: High Yield Bank Accounts
The benefits of working with private banks for wealthy individuals include a sense of confidentiality, an understanding of the complexity that can impact the finances of people with a high net worth, and the development of personalized relationships and one-on-one attention.
Typically, when you work with private banks, you’ll be assigned a relationship manager who is your point person for every area of service and asset management you receive. Another benefit of working with the top private banks is often that clients have a significantly more substantial return on their investments as compared to what they would see otherwise.
List of the Best Private Banks
- BMO Private Bank US
- Citi Private Bank
- Deutsche Bank – Private Banking
- Goldman Sachs Private Wealth Management (PWM)
- HSBC Private Bank
- J.P. Morgan Private Bank – Global Wealth Management
- Merrill Lynch Private Banking and Investment Group
- Morgan Stanley Private Wealth Management
- UBS Private Bank
- Wells Fargo Private Bank
This list is sorted alphabetically (click any of the above names to go directly to the detailed review for that private bank).
Methodology for Selecting Top Private Banks
You may wonder how we begin to rank the best private banks and the best private wealth management firms.
To begin, there is an exhaustive search of all of the private banks, as well as the best wealth management banks. Then, based on criteria that includes the best private banking services offered by each as well as reputation, the list is narrowed down to include only the top private banks.
Then, our signature “Breakthrough Selection Methodology” is applied to create a list of the top 10 private banks.
Click here for a detailed explanation of our methodology: AdvisoryHQ’s Methodology for Selecting Top Private Banks.
Top Private Banks
BMO Private Bank US
Citi Private Bank
Deutsche Bank – Private Banking
Goldman Sachs Private Wealth Management (PWM)
HSBC Private Bank
J.P. Morgan Private Bank – Global Wealth Management
Merrill Lynch Private Banking and Investment Group
Morgan Stanley Private Wealth Management
UBS Private Bank
Wells Fargo Private Bank
(List is sorted alphabetically)
Detailed Review—Top Ranking Private Banks
After carefully considering the best private banks, we created the following list of the top 10. As you continue reading, you’ll find detailed reviews for each of our picks, as well as specifics of some of the factors we used in our decision-making process.
BMO Private Bank US Review
BMO Private Bank is backed by the security, stability, and reputation of BMO Financial Group. BMO Financial Group includes not only private banking and wealth management but also BMO Harris Bank, which features traditional banking products and services. Also part of this company is BMO Harris Financial Advisors and BMO Capital Markets, designed for the complex needs of institutional clients.
BMO Private Bank strives to work with clients to simplify complicated issues associated with wealth, provide guidance on how to respond to changes in the markets, regulatory changes, and legal changes, and use a combination of intelligence and research-based insights to solve even the most difficult financial challenges.
Key Factors That Enabled This Firm to Rank as a Best Private Bank
Below are some of the essential reasons BMO Private Bank was included in this ranking of the best banks for personal banking.
The essential foundation that drives all of the services and products offered by this pick for a best bank for personal banking is collaboration. Clients work with a primary relationships manager who then coordinates an entire team of professionals. This team can include wealth specialists, trust and estate specialists, financial planners, and investment experts. In some cases, clients also want this team to work with other advisors, including attorneys and accounts.
The result of this collaborative approach is a sense of relevant advice throughout every stage of the development and implementation of a wealth management strategy. This team works solely to help the client achieve their financial goals, whatever they may be.
An indicator of the exceptional client service delivered by BMO Private Bank is their many awards. Some of the recent ones they’ve received include:
- 2016 Best Domestic Private Bank from Global Financial Market Review: This award focuses on those providing outstanding client service and maintaining high retention rates, as well as customized solutions and investment strategies, and exemplary industry leadership excellence.
- Best Private Bank Midwest USA from Global Banking & Finance Review: This award focuses on the broad and innovative selection of products and services for both individual and business accounts, as well as customized solutions delivered to meet the needs of clients.
- Top Five Ranking by the Luxury Institute: Here, the focus is on researching and understanding best practices as well as attitudes and behaviors of wealthy consumers.
While there may be some similarities between the best private banking services offered by various banks and financial institutions, there are often significant differences in their approach, which is what sets one apart from another.
The BMO Private Bank approach is first based on relationships, as well as knowledge and thought leadership.
BMO Private Bank has a team of advisors and wealth management professionals who realize what’s most important is to help the client achieve their personal goals, so listening and understanding these goals and the client’s lifestyle are the essential components of the approach.
Once a relationship is cultivated on this concept, the BMO Private Bank team will then remain connected to a client and continuously reassess their circumstances to make sure their needs are continually being met.
For clients of this best private bank, there is very much a focus on offering key insights, research-driven solutions, and educational materials to clients. The goal is to inform clients, so they create regular presentations, publications, and videos that do just that.
For example, some current resources available include “BMO Wealth Institute,” “Outlook for Financial Markets,” and “Your Wealth Your Way.” There are also news articles and market trends, as well as tools such as the “Take Charge of Your Retirement Workbook.”
BMO Harris also offers specific articles and educational resources for women as it pertains to managing their wealth.
Citi Private Bank Review
Citi Private Bank is part of the Citi Institutional Clients Group, which delivers corporate and investment business banking services. Citi itself has a history that spans more than two centuries, and it includes a global network of professionals and resources, which is ideal for those clients with international business or financial interests.
Citi Bank was founded in 1812 and since that time has become an integral part of the financial world and the personal and business lives of clients around the world. James A. Forese serves as President of Citigroup and the leader of the Institutional Clients Group, while Peter Clive Charrington is the Global Head of Citi Private Bank.
Key Factors That Led Us to Rank This Firm as a Best Private Bank
The list below represents some of the service and unique features of Citi Private Bank that led to its inclusion on this list of the best banks for personal banking.
Four principles guide all investment services offered by this top private wealth management firm. These principles include the need for a disciplined long-term investment plan, the need for fresh investment ideas, trading and hedging in your portfolio, and objectivity in selecting appropriate opportunities.
Of particular interest to many clients here is the concept of unique investment ideas, which the Citi team feels are essential to protect and grow wealth. Innovative insights, tactical opportunities, actionable themes, portfolio construction, and risk management are all weighed and considered here for the best possible outcomes.
Also key to investment services are the identification of new trends and emerging developments as they happen across markets and economies, as well as strategic and tactical insights.
Uncovering Hidden Risks
A significant part of the approach undertaken with every Citi Private Bank client is the uncovering of hidden risks or those risks that could potentially prove detrimental for wealthy clients that might not be identified by other financial professionals. There are several layers of protection offered to clients.
This first begins by working with an Investment Counselor, who will often recommend portfolio specialists do a detailed analysis of the current portfolio. Then, the Citi Global Investment Lab looks at the entirety of the client’s wealth and identifies all areas of risk exposure, including ones the client often wasn’t previously aware of. Then, new asset allocations can be recommended and implemented by the Citi Private Banking team.
Lawyers and Law Firms
This pick for one of the top private wealth management firms includes many areas of specialized expertise, and one of these is in working with lawyers and law firms. Citi has been a partner and advisor for legal clients for nearly fifty years. Services provided to lawyers and law firms include:
- Law firm group services
- Aircraft finance
- Investment finance
- Real estate
- Art advisory and finance
Citi can also work with law firms at the following levels: the firm, associate to partner, uncovering hidden ideas, buying a unique property, and guidance when there’s passion for art.
Citi has more than a thousand family office clients throughout the world, and they are uniquely positioned with an understanding of the particular challenges a family office, as well as executives of a family office, might face.
The Citi team can work with family offices to help them in every aspect of their financial and wealth management, including how to best handle investments, tax and estate planning issues, and even administrative and personal issues. Clients are advised on best practices for a family office, and Citi’s private bankers and leading wealth management advisors can also help these clients learn how to use outside vendors and advisors to the best possible advantage.
Deutsche Bank Private Banking Review
Deutsche Bank Private Bank is one of the world’s top international investment banks, and their private client franchise is one of the strongest elements of their well-established business. Deutsche Bank includes services and employees in more than 70 countries, including a growing presence in North America, Asia, and other emerging markets.
In terms of private banking services specifically, Deutsche has been recognized as one of the best banks for personal banking in the world. Regional sites served by Deutsche private banking and wealth management include the Americas, Switzerland, Asia Pacific, Germany, Austria, and Luxembourg.
Key Factors That Enabled This Firm to Rank as One of the Top Private Banks
Some of the reasons Deutsche was included on this list of the best private banks are cited below.
A big part of the strength of Deutsche as one of the top private banks are their international resources and network. There are locations throughout much of the world, and while their Private and Commercial Clients International Corporate Division operates primarily in European markets, there are also locations throughout Asia and India. This can be valuable for private clients with interests all over the world who can’t work with a private bank where geographic barriers are an issue.
Deutsche Bank represents a global network in and of itself, and advisors can also tap into international third-party resources when necessary. This can also be incredibly valuable when understanding international tax issues.
Discretionary Portfolio Management
Deutsche offers a full array of investment solutions and discretionary portfolio management, which is ideal for private clients who simply don’t have the time to dedicate to remaining on top of the complexity and rapid changes demonstrated in global markets.
Deutsche Bank employs a network of investment experts throughout the world, and the Global House View includes perspectives and expert guidance at the regional and local level.
Portfolios are always monitored for suitability in the context of changing conditions, and regular performance reporting is provided.
The approach of wealth management and private banking services offered by Deutsche are driven by a desire to offer a boutique experience while simultaneously maximizing the vast global resources that are part of this financial institution.
The approach includes serving the needs of high and ultra-high-net-worth individuals, families, and certain institutions. Capabilities include the following:
- Traditional and alternative open architecture investments
- Structured risk management solutions
- Investment advisory
- Banking and lending
- Wealth planning
- Family office services
- Global custody
The approach is also driven by a commitment to the cultivation of meaningful client relationships, which happen one at a time.
Another specific area of service provided by this top private wealth management firm is centered on fixed-income clients. For many high-net-worth investments, fixed income is a key part of their portfolio, and these markets have become increasingly complex. It’s important these clients have a team behind them that understands how to manage the specific and unique risks of fixed-income portfolios.
That team is available through Deutsche Bank’s wealth management and private banking branch. The professionals can assist clients in managing their fixed-income assets, including AA or lower-rated bonds, government bonds, and corporate issues.
Goldman Sachs Private Wealth Management Review
Goldman Sachs is one of the trusted names in the financial industry, and through their private wealth management services, they work on a close basis with high-net-worth individuals, and in some cases, families, foundations, and endowments to develop value-creating strategies and plans.
Private wealth management services are offered throughout the world, including in the U.S., Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia, and Latin America. Specific services available under the umbrella of private wealth management include investment advisory, trading and hedging solutions, and trust and administration services.
Key Factors That Allowed This to Rank as One of the Best Wealth Management Banks
Key elements of Goldman Sachs Private Wealth Management that led to its ranking on this list of the best private banks are below.
Diversity and Inclusion
Diversity and inclusion are two important concepts key to Goldman Sachs being ranked as one of the best private banking services providers. The commitment Goldman Sachs makes to employees, clients, and stakeholders is that they will create a diverse environment, which achieves the following goals:
- The firm strives to be the best in all ways and to do that they have to have top talent from a broad pool of applicants.
- The culture at Goldman Sachs is one of teamwork, so for groups to excel, there must be a sense of inclusiveness, unique perspectives, and support for differences.
- The interests of the clients come first. To provide the most creative and innovative ideas and solutions in a globalized economy, it’s important that employees are diverse in their cultures and perspectives. According to the commitment made by Goldman Sachs, experience shows that clients needs and interests are best served by utilizing the insights and talents of a diverse workforce.
All of the best private banking services delivered by Goldman Sachs to high-net-worth clients are based on the following services and approach:
- Advise: Goldman Sachs can advise clients on buying and selling businesses, managing risks, and raising capital.
- Finance: This service is offered at the local, state, and national level for governmental clients who need to finance operations and invest in infrastructure.
- Transact: Goldman Sachs makes transactions on behalf of clients in all key financial markets.
- Support: The goal is to help markets remain liquid and efficient so that needs can be met, whether that’s to invest, raise capital, or manage risk.
- Invest: Goldman Sachs capital is invested alongside that of their clients to help in the growth of businesses.
- Innovate: Central to the Goldman Sachs approach is innovation to drive new perspectives, as well as creative paths to growth.
In order to remain an innovative leader in private wealth management, Goldman Sachs offers insight on topics that include asset allocation, market dynamics, wealth management, and various investment strategies.
When clients build a relationship with the private wealth management area of Goldman Sachs, they have access to the intellectual capital that makes this firm so unique among the best private banks.
Intellectual capital is strategically leveraged to guide clients toward the most value-creating solutions.
Private Banking and Lending
As well as private wealth management, Goldman Sachs also offers private banking and lending services. This makes it easier for clients to manage both their assets and liabilities. These services include cash management and sweeps that can be integrated with investment accounts.
There are also payment services such as check writing and debit card services, online banking opportunities, electronic funds movement, and with a referral, clients can take advantage of a Goldman Sachs American Express Platinum card.
There are also lending options designed to improve liquidity, and these range from traditional solutions to unique options such as commercial real estate and private jets.
HSBC Private Bank Review
HSBC Private Bank is often ranked as a pick for the best bank for millionaires, with tailored wealth management and banking solutions that help clients grow, manage, and preserve their wealth. The HSBC Private Bank is part of the HSBC Group, which is one of largest financial services organizations in the world.
Members of this leading international banking and financial group include HSBC Private Bank (U.K.) Limited, which was founded in 1853. HSBC Private Bank was established in 1999, and this name includes the international private banking business of HSBC.
Key Factors That Enabled Us to Rank This Firm as a Best Private Bank
When comparing the best private wealth management firms and the best private banks, below are some reasons HSBC Private Bank ranks highly.
Alternative Investment Services
The HSBC Alternative Investment group works to create unique alternative investment opportunities, including hedge funds, private equity, and real estate, offered to private and institutional clients.
HSBC has been delivering alternative investment expertise for more than 25 years, and some of the options and services available from this private wealth management firm include:
- Commingled funds
- Customized segregated mandates
- Club deals
- Co-investment opportunities
Private Banking Services
When you become a client of HSBC Private Bank, you partner with a Relationship Manager. It’s this person’s responsibility to get to know your current situation, your goals, and your overall needs. Within the umbrella of this relationship, some of the best private banking services offered by HSBC include investment, real estate, tailored lending, and hedge funds.
Additionally, HSBC has put in place special programs for women in business, which speaks to the needs of businesswomen who also have other interests and requirements in their lives. HSBC works with business women to help them create plans that will be valuable in the long-term and also in line with family commitments.
The signature Investment Outlook program from HSBC is designed to give clients insight and a unique perspective into what’s happening throughout the world regarding innovative investment opportunities across asset classes. The program offers perspective at the macro level and shows the themes, trends, and concepts affecting the international investment environment.
As part of this program, clients receive access to the quarterly Investment Outlook publication, as well as invitations to seminars, debates, and panel discussions.
Other exclusive benefits of this program include training in financial and family governances to help the next generation of your family, event sponsorship, and thought-leadership programs for owners of family businesses.
For those clients of this best bank for personal banking who want to invest in real estate, HSBC has a team of professionals who scour the globe for the best opportunities. These professionals create a partnership with clients to make sure they not only have access to top opportunities but also that their ROI is optimized.
The real estate investment team of this top private wealth management firm will create a partnership approach, and opportunities include commercial real estate, hard assets, and diversified funds. The analysis of opportunities is driven forward at the macro, strategic, and tactical levels, and the real estate team also partners with regional asset managers to uncover opportunities in markets that are ordinarily very restrictive.
J.P. Morgan Private Bank Review
J.P. Morgan Private Bank is part of the J.P. Morgan Chase & Co., which is one of the most recognized, established, and reputable financial institutions in the world. The company has a history in New York City dating back to 1799, and mergers throughout the years have turned this into a global powerhouse among financial institutions.
The Private Bank of J.P. Morgan strives to deliver the utmost in intelligence and insight to global high-net-worth individuals and families. Insights are always based on a macro worldview.
Key Factors Leading Us to Rank This Firm as One of the Best Wealth Management Banks
Primary reasons J.P. Morgan Private Bank was included on this list of the top private wealth management firms are detailed below.
As one of the best private wealth management firms and banks, J.P. Morgan has offices throughout the world, making them accessible and in-tune with what’s happening globally, regionally, and locally.
The headquarters of this top private bank is in New York, and there are 45 offices throughout the U.S.
There are also hubs of this best wealth management bank in London and Geneva, as well as offices in all the world’s top financial centers. More than 30 countries across Europe, the Middle East, and Africa are served by the best private banking services available through J.P. Morgan.
The Philanthropy Centre
The Philanthropy Centre at J.P. Morgan is designed to improve the impact of philanthropy on a global basis, so each member of the Centre is a senior advisor with anywhere from 15 to 20 years’ experience in the world of philanthropy as well as the non-profit sector.
This dedicated Philanthropy Centre helps with the guidance of clients through the relevant aspects that are required to help them create a plan of philanthropy, as well as the management of a private foundation.
Whether clients want to protect the inheritance of their children through a trust or make charitable donations to organizations around the world, The Philanthropy Centre offers an unparalleled level of expertise.
Long-Term Wealth Management
When a client of this pick for one of the best wealth management banks partners with J.P. Morgan, they will have access to insight, know-how, and strategies that will help them preserve their wealth over their lifetime and the lifetime of their families. While each client is going to have somewhat different goals, the approach usually centers on some essential components, which include:
- Looking at project outcomes so clients can make the most informed and educated decisions
- The evaluation of risk to a current wealth plan, like the rate of spending, trustees, and how assets are held
- Evaluation of concentrated positions
- Succession planning or planning for the sale of a business
- Charitable giving strategies
- Plan execution through working as a fiduciary
While the specific structure of your team is dependent on your unique goals and objectives, when you work with this selection for one of the top private banks, certain team members will likely be part of the comprehensive, multi-level approach undertaken at J.P. Morgan Private Bank.
These team members include:
- A banker who coordinates specialists and serves as your primary contact and point person
- Investment experts who bring creative ideas to the table based on global markets
- Capital advisor who creates tailored lending options for liquidity, with an eye toward the short- and long-term
- Client service specialist will provide service regarding your daily banking and account needs
- Trust officers will create and administer trusts in line with your objectives
- A wealth advisor will design strategies for wealth planning, transfer, and philanthropy
Merrill Lynch Private Banking and Investment Group Review
Merrill Lynch serves as the wealth management division of Bank of America, following an acquisition in 2009. Merrill Lynch Wealth Management is headquartered in New York City and is one of the largest private banks with more than 15,000 financial advisors, and management of more than $2.2 trillion in assets.
Christopher M. Hyzy serves as the managing director and chief investment officer of the Global Wealth & Investment Management Division of Bank of America, which includes not only Merrill Lynch Wealth Management but also Bank of America Private Wealth Management. John Thiel serves as the head of Merrill Lynch Wealth Management in terms of strategic management of the U.S. Wealth Management Group and Private Banking & Investment Group.
Key Factors That Enabled This to Rank as a Top Private Wealth Management Firm
When comparing the best private banks and the best wealth management banks, the following represents some reasons Merrill Lynch was included in this review.
As one of the world’s premier private banks, and a name that’s often considered the best bank for millionaires, Merrill Lynch strives to provide clients with the greatest value. Their advisors promise to uphold certain stringent standards with each client engagement, and these include:
- Transparency: This includes honesty and transparency regarding potential risks, outcomes, and fees. Fees are confirmed with each offering, there is a thorough explanation of risks, and there are periodic reviews.
- Customization: Advice is completely customized to the individual client based on an evaluation of priorities and the present financial situation. This also includes a process that’s defined from the outset and continuous monitoring.
- Responsible Service: Again, Merrill Lynch emphasizes a dedication to explaining all of the possible services and options, and keeping in touch in the way that the client prefers. There’s also a promise to provide timely communication.
- Team Approach: The team of advisors is trained to understand and achieve the goals of the client. This team approach is based on collaboration and dialogue, rather than sporadic conversations.
Something a lot of clients like about Merrill Lynch is the size of this private wealth management firm and bank. With 14,000 advisors, there’s a massive pool of professionals to select from, so clients feel like they really have the opportunity to partner with the person or people who are right for them.
Merrill Lynch will begin the process of matching a client with an advisor based on technicalities such as geographic location, so the person is conveniently located to the client’s home or work.
Then, there will be consideration of the specific areas of expertise a client may require.
Finally, Merrill Lynch emphasizes the importance of having a personal connection with an advisor, so that the client feels comfortable working with that person closely to achieve their goals.
Wealth management clients of Merrill Lynch receive access to exclusive private bank rewards as well, through Bank of America. Bank of America offers rewards specifically for clients of this top private wealth management firm, including:
- Unlimited monthly maintenance fee waivers for all Bank of America checking and savings accounts
- No fee for certain services, including two outbound wire transfers per statement period
- Unlimited no-fee withdrawals for private wealth management clients who use a Bank of America debit card at non-Bank of America ATMs in the U.S.
- International travel benefits
- 75% credit card rewards bonus on eligible Bank of America credit card accounts
- An interest rate discount on auto loans with Bank of America
Something exclusive to clients of Merrill Lynch, frequently named as a best private bank in the world, is their Investment Personality Assessment. This is used to help advisors gauge where a client stands in terms of their priorities, their feeling toward risk and their goals.
It specifically looks at a client’s mindset toward their confidence in the markets, their willingness to adapt to changes in the market and varying outcomes, their experience with investing, and the strategies they’re likely to be most comfortable with.
Morgan Stanley Private Wealth Management Review
Morgan Stanley Wealth Management has worked for almost 80 years to provide individuals, families, businesses, and institutions the solutions and services that allow them not just to preserve and manage but also build their wealth. There are Morgan Stanley Wealth Management offices around the world, and the U.S. office was founded in New York City in 1935.
Since that initial founding, the company has grown to include a presence in 43 countries and 55,000 employees. The headquarters remains in the U.S., including the World Headquarters which is still in New York. There also U.S. offices in Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, San Francisco, and other key cities.
Key Factors That Led Us to Rank This Firm as a Top Private Wealth Management Firm
Highlighted below are details of why Morgan Stanley is often named as one of the top private banks in the world.
Morgan Stanley remains committed to delivering principle-driven service to each client. These principles include the following:
- There is confidence in a business that has been through decades of changing and fluctuating market cycles.
- Clients have access to the best and brightest of Morgan Stanley talent and resources.
- The focus is exclusively on the particular needs and requirements of high-net-worth individuals, families, and foundations.
- Solutions are objective and reflect unique, cutting-edge insight into the complexities that characterize the financial world.
- Personal service is offered at the highest possible level, with each advisor serving only a few clients.
Morgan Stanley is a unique private wealth management services provider in a number of ways, including the clients they serve. Unlike many other private banks, Morgan Stanley works only with individuals and families who have at least $20 million in investible assets. This boutique firm can create tailored strategies with only the wealthiest of clients in mind.
There is also expertise in handling the most complex financial structuring, tax and estate strategies, and highly complicated family office requirements.
As part of this, this top private bank also regularly holds exclusive events and educational programs for intimate groups of what they consider ultra-high-net-worth individuals.
Institute for Sustainable Investing
The premise behind the Morgan Stanley Institute for Sustainable Investing is “Investing with Impact.” The belief is that there is value in choosing investment opportunities that have high returns, but also that are beneficial to society.
The platform is driven by concepts of flexibility and engagement, and clients can select from more than 130 products which include mutual funds, exchange-traded funds, separately managed accounts, and alternative investment opportunities. Approaches include values alignment, environmental integration, thematic exposure, and impact investing.
A dedication to research drives all of the advisement and wealth management services delivered by Morgan Stanley. It’s this research, which is comprehensive and relevant, that allows Morgan Stanley to offer world-class opportunities, backed by data and hard numbers. In fact, Morgan Stanley is considered a leader in investment research, with analysis of individual companies, markets, industries, and entire world economies.
It's this research that helps teams determine the best investment decisions and uncover new opportunities for clients.
UBS Private Bank Review
UBS Private Bank and Private Wealth Management has a history of 150 years and includes offices in more than 50 countries. The UBS Wealth Management headquarters are located in New York and New Jersey, making them accessible for national and international clients.
Under the umbrella of the UBS Wealth Management Americas sector are services including planning, investing, banking, research, corporate solutions, and private wealth. UBS has a globally-driven team of expert financial advisors and professionals poised to help wealthy individuals, companies, and families address even their most difficult financial issues.
Key Factors Considered When Ranking This as One of the Best Private Wealth Management Firms
When reviewing criteria that determine the best private banks and the best wealth management banks, the following details some reasons UBS was included in this ranking.
One of the areas of expertise and focus offered by UBS Wealth Management is within the realm of multi-generational wealthy families. The UBS professionals can work with clients who are part of these unique scenarios to develop trusting relationships that last a lifetime.
Some of the areas of service that are offered to multi-generational families include trust and estate planning, preparation for the next generation, and philanthropy.
Regarding trust and estate planning, UBS advisors can work with legal advisors, trust, and estate planning specialists to outline the best course of action to preserve and transfer wealth.
Private Wealth Advisors from UBS can also work with the younger generations to help them gain an understanding of the undertaking required to manage inherited wealth. In terms of philanthropy, advisors can provide everything from implementation to continuous oversight at all stages.
Key to everything provided by UBS Wealth Management is the conveyance of confidence to clients, particularly in an uncertain economic environment. The goal of wealth management from UBS is to make sure clients feel secure, no matter what is happening in the markets, the economy, or their lives.
Financial advisors create this sense of confidence through experience, proprietary research, and strategic partnerships.
When selecting from the leading private banks, fees, commissions, and other charges can also be a major point of consideration for clients. UBS strives to be as transparent and as clear as possible in these areas. They have outlined that an important aspect of a client relationship with UBS is an understanding of fees, charges, and other compensation.
This private wealth management organization has created a guide called “Understanding Our Fees, Charges, and Other Compensation.”
This guide provides information about how the firm is paid for their services, how Financial Advisors are compensated, and payments received from third parties for certain products and services. It also highlights potential conflicts of interest that could arise and other informational references.
The belief of UBS Wealth Management’s team is that it’s important to have your entire financial picture working together for the best results. This means assets, liabilities, and cash management strategies are all integrated with one another to achieve streamlined objectives. A UBS Financial Advisor can help clients maintain consistency, and part of this is the provision of services that compliment wealth management strategies.
Some of these complementary services include:
- The securing of financing for business or personal financing through securities-backed lending
- UBS Mortgage programs
- The combination of investments, financing, and cash management in a centralized location for simplified management
- The UBS Card Program offers extensive benefits and rewards for Wealth Management clients
Wells Fargo Private Bank Review
The Wells Fargo Private Bank is part of Wells Fargo Bank and has been named the fourth-largest wealth manager for accounts over $5 million by Barron’s. Wells Fargo Private Bank has also been ranked as the number one Wealth Management/Financial Asset Advisory by the Best of National Law Journal.
The Private Bank can help clients with a diverse array of needs, regardless of what part of their life they’re in, including building wealth, managing it, and transitioning wealth. All services are goal-driven.
Key Factors That Led to Our Ranking of This as One of the Best Private Banks
Primary reasons Wells Fargo Private Bank was included on this list of the best wealth management banks are listed below.
The process undertaken in each client engagement is one that’s flexible and goal-centric. While there is flexibility, there is also a sense of discipline, and there is a collaboration between other professional advisors who may be involved in your financial situation.
The process begins by understanding your goals. Then, your situation is analyzed systematically and completely. At that point, an advisement plan is created based on your input, as well as the expertise of the Wells Fargo team. Finally, there is evolution, based on continual measures of success.
Wells Fargo Private Bank operates with a team-based approach. This means the relationship manager is the client’s point-person, and they manage as many other advisors or specialists as are needed to achieve client goals.
Key professionals who may work along with the client, the client’s CPA, and the client’s legal team as well as the Wells Fargo relationship manager include:
- Wealth advisor
- Wealth planner
- Private banker
- Fiduciary advisory specialist
- Investment strategist
- Financial advisor
- Wealth insurance specialist
The Wells Fargo Private Bank team is guided by a philosophy. This philosophy includes client success as the number one priority. The belief is that three factors contribute to client success: people, process, and philosophy.
This means there needs to be a relationship the client can depend on, tailored wealth planning and solutions, and a team of experienced, multi-disciplined professionals.
Just as the high-net-worth clients of Wells Fargo Private Bank are diverse in their needs and goals, so are the solutions this top private bank can provide to them. Solutions offered by The Private Bank include not just traditional, customized private banking, but also the following:
- Wealth planning to help clients create custom plans regardless of their financial situation
- Investment management that looks beyond the basics of return and risk and also considers factors like cash flow, time horizon, and tax requirements
- Trust services can include trust and discretionary asset management
- Custom insurance solutions can become part of a wealth plan
- Philanthropic service
- Business advisory services
- Real estate asset management
- Life management services
- Oil, gas, and mineral management
- Special needs trust services
Conclusion—Top 10 Private Banks and Top Private Wealth Management Firms
For high-net-worth individuals, the management of finances and investments becomes much more complex and in-depth, and these complicated needs require specialized attention, expertise, and solutions.
That’s why these individuals rely on partnerships with private wealth management firms and private banks.
The above list represents the best private banks and top private wealth management firms not only in the U.S. but throughout the world. Each of the names on this list of the best wealth management banks excels in their breadth of knowledge and experience, their reputation, and their international reach and network capabilities.
If you have questions, comments, or tips about this Top 10 Best Private Banks article, send us an email. Also, follow us on social media to be the first to hear about major economic news stories.
- Follow AdvisoryHQ on Twitter
- Like/Follow AdvisoryHQ on Facebook
- Follow Us on LinkedIn
- Follow Us on Google+
Note: Some firms (and products)—including the one(s) above—that have been reviewed and ranked by AdvisoryHQ may be affiliates of AdvisoryHQ.
Also note that the above article may include affiliate or other related advertisements.
Click here to view AdvisoryHQ’s advertiser and editorial disclosures, which includes a list of our affiliates.