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Members of our staff have been interviewed for more than 100 articles in publications such as Fortune, Houston Chronicle, Houston Business Journal, Money, New York Times, etc. Linscomb & Williams is a repeat winner of the Houston Award for Excellence for client service, and most recently, recipient of the 2009 Pinnacle Award for client service from the Houston Better Business Bureau and the University of Houston College of Business.

The Fiduciary Role: Clearing the Air

by A. Austin Page J. Harold Williams

In this paper, we delineate and explain the differences (and practical implications) between two types of financial advisors: 1) a registered representative of a Wall Street brokerage firm, and 2) an independent investment advisor or wealth manager acting in a fiduciary capacity.

First, we will provide a brief explanation of the legal standard of care, which currently applies to these two types of financial advisors. A brief overview of the history and evolution of efforts to set standards of care for those rendering investment assistance to clients is provided as additional background. This is followed by a discussion that contrasts the roles and compensation methods of registered representatives versus investment advisors. Finally, we illuminate the conflicts of interest faced by investment professionals functioning in each of these roles. → Read the full The Fiduciary Role: Clearing the Air White Paper (PDF)

The Hidden Risks of Annuities

by J. Harold Williams

Dismal financial conditions, such as the 2008–09 bear market and the subsequent uncertain economic recovery, often create opportunities for clever marketing strategies designed to capitalize upon investor fears. It is common for the insurance industry and Wall Street investment banks to take advantage of such marketing opportunities.

There are some investor-friendly, straightforward low-load annuity products (typically offered through companies such as Fidelity, Schwab, T. Rowe Price and Vanguard) that deliver good value. However, the annuity contracts being heavily promoted in the current market are quite different. Members of the professional staff at Linscomb & Williams have provided expert witness testimony in variable annuity litigation, providing an excellent opportunity to fully dissect these contracts. This paper shares some our experience and insights, helping you protect yourself while making the most of your money.

Read the full The Hidden Risks of Annuities White Paper (PDF)