For investors, a moment of optimism

Although the recession is still on the forefront of many investors' minds, Brown says Wall Street is optimistic. The relative stability of asset markets, rise within market charts, and growing compensation of advisors has brought a welcome change in atmosphere to the floor.

Mike Segar/Reuters/File
Traders work on the main trading floor of the New York Stock Exchange shortly after the opening bell in New York, May 2013.

It's a tough moment to beat for my profession — investors have been returning to the markets and putting money to work, asset markets have been fairly non-volatile and almost all market charts are moving "up and to the right." The fear of crises past is still with us — which is restraining the behavior of many in a very healthy way - but investors are once again recognizing the value of long-term asset management and wise counsel.

A glimpse at what this kind of atmosphere translates to via Diana Britton at

It feels a lot like 2006. The equity markets are up 30 percent since the beginning of 2012; retail investors are finally starting to put their money to work. And advisors are starting to see an increase in their pay, especially within the fee-based portion of their business, according to REP. magazine’s annual advisor compensation survey.

Seventy-one percent of advisors said their total compensation grew in 2012, with about half saying it rose by more than 10 percent, according to the REP. report. Seventy percent said they are serving more clients than a year ago, and 79 percent have experienced a net increase in new dollars clients have invested with them.

FAs are even more optimistic about this year, with 59 percent expecting their compensation to grow by 10 percent or more in 2013.

Need I quote Lou Mannheim from Wall Street here? Okay, I shall... "Kid, you're on a roll. Enjoy it while it lasts, 'cause it never does."

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