Frequenly Asked Questions (FAQs)
What makes RSD unique from other RIAs?
Our depth of investment experience is our biggest differential from other RIAs. We find most independent advisors are comprised of teams who left their lives at a big broker, private bank or trust company to set up their own shop. Often these people did very little of their own investment research or financial planning, usually relying on other departments to do that work for them so they could “produce” (sell). We are an independent fiduciary advisory. The team at RSD has spent many years as actual practitioners in trading, portfolio management and research. We do not buy “models” from other firms or outsource the investment function. We leverage our institutional experience - having overseen hundreds of millions of dollars in some of the most challenging market environments - to provide our clients with a sophisticated financial plan that addresses all aspects of their financial lives.
My accountant/lawyer provides investment advice. Why shouldn’t I just use him/her?
While in some respects it’s easy to only have to deal with one person or firm for all your tax, legal and investment advice, the reality is that It’s very difficult to be good at all these things at once. Many accountants and lawyers have expanded their practices to offer investment advice to create new revenue streams. One needs to look carefully, though, as to their actual investment experience. Just like we do not offer specific legal or tax advice (although we take these things into careful consideration in the planning process), most accountants and lawyers do not have the knowledge or tools to offer prudent stewardship of a clients’ investable assets. We work closely with our client’s tax and legal professionals to ensure we work as a team in helping our clients achieve their financial goals.
What is your investment philosophy?
There is an old mantra in the investment world that the only free lunch is diversification. The problem with this is when everything moves in the same direction as it did in the financial crisis of 08-09. We think a better mantra is “You can’t compound a lost dollar.” This leads us to having a strong focus on risk management and income orientated securities. Our CIO, Rick Daskin, has spent many years trading and investing fixed income and income-orientated securities (High Yield, Munis, CEFs, MLPs.) Stocks, do, however, play an important part in our clients’ portfolios as opportunities for growth present themselves. The importance of “buy low, sell high” cannot be overstated.
What are your minimums and fees?
The clients that come to us usually have a minimum of $100K to start. We find that our fees are extremely competitive with other RIAs. We are a fiduciary advisor. Our platform is open architecture, meaning we don’t use in house products that may pose a conflict of interest. We charge fees based on assets under management rather than commissions which we believe better align our clients interests along with our interests. It should be noted, though, that as a firm we are laser-focused on the management fees of our client’s underlying investments. We typically favor ETFs, index funds and some single stock or bond positions where we have a particular expertise. We normally eschew expensive mutual funds where history has shown there is a low probability of outperforming the market. That being said, there are times where active management can add alpha to a portfolio – normally through a closed-end fund where we can purchase the fund at a discount and the management fee is reasonable.
Wouldn’t I be better served by a larger firm that has more resources?
RSD utilizes proper tools and processes to support our clients. Having come from the institutional investment world, we know how important it is to develop an optimal operational structure across planning, investing, communication and compliance.
Do you act as fiduciaries for your clients?
Yes we do. This is a role we do not take lightly. RSD Advisors is registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission. You can find our ADV here. In addition, the investment professionals at RSD are members of the CFA Institute with our CIO holding both the CFA charterholder designation as well as the Chartered Financial Planner (CFP®) designation.