August 2016 – Magazines and Mailed Brokerage Newsletters

This month’s Broker Monitor Report takes a step away from our usual discussions of brokerage account features to investigate a supplementary item offered by firms: investment newsletters and magazines. Both of these publication types serve multiple purposes for brokerages. They are a means of communicating important firm information, a medium for promoting products and services, as well as a value-added resource for investment and planning tips.

For this report, we review publications by eight of the 18 firms in our coverage group. Since the last time we covered this topic, in 2014, two magazines have been discontinued entirely, while three others were transitioned into websites as firms place less of an emphasis on journalism-style content than in years past. One aspect of the publications we reviewed that has remained strong is investment advice. Three publications provide asset allocation recommendations, and an additional two explain to clients how to invest in different products. One magazine avoids investments entirely, serving more as luxury branding.