Long term lurker here....
I'm at a wire right now and am about to enter my last (5th) year on my contract/prom note.
Came to the wire in mid 2005 with a LOS of 4 years doing $200k with $14 million. Did $260k in 2006, $350k in 2007.
I was clipping right along at good pace in 2008, then got very conservative after Bear collapsed and into the Summer. I basically raised cash for my business owner clients and held existing positions for my long horizon retirement accounts. Because of this relatively conservative approach, I didn't lose 1 client and only lost about 30% of AUM from peak to trough. Also because of this, my production fell to $250k in 2008.
Well, fast forward to today, and my trailing 12 is down to $175k and, barring any elephant kills, it looks like my gross will only be about $200k. AUM are currently $24million ($2 million in annuities, $8 million in the money market (ugh), $5 million in 401k plans, the rest in funds and managed accounts)
All of it is a huge bummer, but I can look at myself in the mirror without feeling any shame.
Here is the problem..... This year I turn 8 years LOS. If I don't do $250k in gross during 2009, I get put in the penalty box with only a 20-25% payout depending on tier. I can't feed my family on $40k a year.. and I couldn't look at myself in the mirror because of the payout beating I was taking................
So I've got to make a decision. Suck it up, live off savings, don't look in the mirror and stay with a 20-25% payout for 6 months until my contract is over (July 2010), then go Indy OR find an Indy now that will offer a transition package. Bear in mind, even though my penalty box payout would be horrible, I would still work off about $6k per month in money owed under the terms of my prom note.
I know that Indy's don't all (or maybe none do ala LPL, Commonwealth) offer transition deals, but I would need the $$ to help settle up with the money owed to my current firm.
The other concern I have is that my firm could chop off the <$250 brokers (UBS style), then I'd have no leverage at all when making a transition, plus not having a shingle would give the other brokers in my office more time to retain my relationships AND I'd still be on the hook for the remaining $$ owed on my prom note.
So, does anyone know of a Indy in the New England area that offers transition deals? Am I missing any other opportunities here?
Any reccomendations are very welcome. Thanks for reading.