Financial Services firm Edward Jones named Firm of the Year — Office located in Cranford - Financial Services firm Edward Jones named Firm of the Year — Office located in Cranford -

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Financial Services firm Edward Jones named Firm of the Year — Office located in Cranford -

Financial Services firm Edward Jones named Firm of the Year — Office located in Cranford -

Financial services firm Edward Jones was named the Advisory Solutions Firm of the Year by the Money Management Institute as the firm that most exemplified overall excellence and contributed to the long-term success and sustainability of the wealth management industry, according to Michael Flynn, a financial advisor in Cranford.

The award was presented at the Institute's annual Gateway to Leadership Awards Dinner held recently in Chicago. The Money Management Institute is the national association for the managed investment solutions and the wealth management industry. This award recognizes the features and benefits of both of the firm's advisory platforms.

Edward Jones Advisory Solutions is an asset allocation and advisory program that allows investors to select from research or custom models with an initial minimum investment of $50,000. The models use a combination of mutual funds, exchange traded funds and separately managed accounts in the construction of the portfolio and allow clients to delegate asset allocation, investment selection and portfolio rebalancing to Edward Jones.

This program now offers 62 fully discretionary research models, in addition to custom models, which allow investors to design a model to match their unique investment needs. With the program's custom models, clients retain discretion over the investment selection from the list of funds available in the program.

Advisory Solutions has proved popular with Edward Jones clients. The program has grown to more than $75 billion in assets under management since its introduction in August 2008. Advisory Solutions now ranks as the country's 4th largest mutual fund advisory program, according to MMI/Dover Research.

In addition, Edward Jones offers a dual contract separately managed account program with more than $2 billion in assets under management.

"We are honored to receive this industry award for creating a program that gives our clients another option in structuring an investment strategy that will help them achieve their long-term investment objectives," said Flynn

Edward Jones provides financial services for individual investors in the United States and, through its affiliate, in Canada. Every aspect of the firm's business, from the types of investment options offered to the location of branch offices, is designed to cater to individual investors in the communities in which they live and work. The firm's 12,000-plus financial advisors work directly with nearly 7 million clients to understand their personal goals — from college savings to retirement — and create long-term investment solutions that emphasize a well-balanced portfolio and a buy-and-hold strategy. Edward Jones embraces the importance of building long-term, face-to-face relationships with clients, helping them to understand and make sense of the investment options available today.

In January 2012, for the 13th year, Edward Jones was named one of the best companies to work for by FORTUNE Magazine in its annual listing. The firm ranked No. 5 overall and No. 3 in Large Size Companies. These 13 FORTUNE rankings include top 10 finishes for nine years, consecutive No. 1 rankings in 2002 and 2003, and consecutive No. 2 rankings in 2009 and 2010. FORTUNE and Time Inc. are not affiliated with and do not endorse products or services of Edward Jones.

The Edward Jones website is at, and its recruiting website is

Spotlight on Cranford: Pictures from readers of the Cranford Chronicle June 4-8, 2012

Take a look at some of the best in photographs sent to the Cranford Chronicle during the week of June 4-8.

Have a photo you would like to share with the paper and your community?

Send it to us at and we will run it in print and post it online.

Grace Financial Drops Petition Against Penson Worldwide Unit - Bloomberg

Grace Financial Group LLC, a Long Island, New York-based broker-dealer serving hedge funds and investment advisers, dropped a request for an injunction against a unit of Penson Worldwide Inc. (PNSN)

Grace Financial, based in Southampton, on May 31 filed a petition in New York state Supreme Court in Manhattan asking a judge to force Penson Financial Services Inc. to continue servicing trades under an agreement between the companies.

The petition was withdrawn without prejudice, according to a stipulation between the two sides dated June 4. Grace Financial dropped the case, said Mark G. Hanchet, an attorney with Mayer Brown LLP representing Penson Financial Services.

“They basically determined there was no point in going forward,” Hanchet said in a telephone interview.

Timothy P. Kebbe, an attorney representing Grace Financial, didn’t respond to a message seeking comment on the withdrawal of the petition, which had sought to stop Penson Financial Services from terminating the agreement or changing any services it provides. The company is a unit of Dallas-based Penson Worldwide.

Penson Financial had told Grace Financial on May 25 that it would stop settling and clearing trades and acting as a custodian for securities traded on local markets outside the U.S., according to the petition.

The case is Grace Financial Group LLC v. Penson Financial Services Inc., 651872/2012, New York state Supreme Court (Manhattan).

To contact the reporter on this story: Chris Dolmetsch in New York at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Hytha at

Stocks with Downward Wedge Patterns: (NIHD), (BBG), (HL), (GEL), (WEN) -
Downward wedge patterns have been noticed on June 8 for the stocks NII Holdings Inc, Bill Barrett Corp, Hecla Mining Co, Genesis Energy LP, and The Wendy's Company. The price range of these stocks is getting more narrow as the downward trend continues, thus signally the trend is losing steam. This sends a bullish signal to investors as the downward trend is ending.

Shares of NII Holdings Inc (NIHD) traded higher by 4.78% or $0.52/share to $11.4. In the past year, the shares have traded as low as $10.33 and as high as $44.00. On average, 3851550 shares of NIHD exchange hands on a given day and today's volume is recorded at 3772641.

Shares of Bill Barrett Corp (BBG) fell by 1.41% or $-0.25/share to $17.45. In the past year, the shares have traded as low as $17.55 and as high as $52.14. On average, 1462800 shares of BBG exchange hands on a given day and today's volume is recorded at 663642.

Shares of Hecla Mining Co (HL) traded higher by 1.11% or $0.05/share to $4.55. In the past year, the shares have traded as low as $3.68 and as high as $8.56. On average, 5383740 shares of HL exchange hands on a given day and today's volume is recorded at 3207314.

Shares of Genesis Energy LP (GEL) traded higher by 0.42% or $0.12/share to $28.48. In the past year, the shares have traded as low as $19.91 and as high as $33.33. On average, 270170 shares of GEL exchange hands on a given day and today's volume is recorded at 56701.

Shares of The Wendy's Company (WEN) fell by 0.66% or $-0.03/share to $4.5. In the past year, the shares have traded as low as $4.23 and as high as $5.53. On average, 3739340 shares of WEN exchange hands on a given day and today's volume is recorded at 1316372.

Detroit's Chief Financial Officer says Detroit will go broke in 1 week -

Jack Martin Jack Martin, Detroit's Chief Financial Officer under a consent agreement with the state of Michigan, said Friday the city would run out of cash within a week if the state withdraws $80 million in revenue sharing.

"We're looking at a week from today, June 15, I think, would be the day," Martin said.

Detroit's City Attorney is suing to stop Detroit from entering into a financial stability agreement with the state of Michigan. The claim is that Michigan is in default to Detroit and that the state has not paid the city enough in shared revenue for years. It's to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars.

The state of Michigan wants the lawsuit pulled immediately because of bond financing. The state floated Detroit $80 million to refinance bonds. Jack Martin said the city has already spent $35 million from the fund.

The state is threatening to send in an emergency manager. That's something Gov. Rick Snyder said he wants to avoid but will have to if the city can't settle on an agreement.

An emergency meeting between Detroit Mayor Dave Bing and City Council was postponed Friday, because Council members said not enough notice was given ahead of time and they were concerned about violating the open meetings act.

"If we were sued based on having a meeting that was not properly noticed, I would get in trouble, not mayor Bing," said City Council President Charles Pugh. "I am very fond of mayor Bing but I am not going to jail for him."

Detroit Mayor Dave Bing Detroit Mayor Dave Bing scheduled the meeting Thursday evening.

He said his frustration level was "off the charts."

"I never anticipated that it would be this difficult to get things done," Bing said. "It's really, really tough. When you start adding fuel to the fire like this, it doesn't help us from an administrative standpoint at all and it's no good for the city."

Bing released this statement Thursday night, but did not respond to interview requests.

"My team is working closely with the state to mitigate any negative impacts on my administration's plan to financially stabilize the city," the mayor's statement read. "We want this matter resolved expeditiously for the sake of the citizens of Detroit."

The meeting has been rescheduled for Monday morning.

State to Detroit: Drop lawsuit or lose money

Stocks, home values help lift Americans' wealth - Columbia Daily Tribune


CHICAGO (AP) — A burst of stock gains and the first rise in home values in six years helped Americans regain more of their wealth in the January-March quarter.

But since then, that effort has hit another bump. Stock prices sank in May on fears about Europe's debt crisis and a weaker U.S. economy.

That eroded the first quarter's gains in wealth.

And there's scant evidence of a sustained recovery in the housing market despite an uptick in home equity.

Household net worth rose 4.7 percent to $62.9 trillion last quarter, according to a Federal Reserve report released yesterday. The main reason was a 12 percent jump in the Standard & Poor's 500 index, which padded the wealth of Americans who own stocks.

Home values increased 2.3 percent.

Household wealth, or net worth, is the value of assets such as homes, bank accounts and stocks, minus debts such as mortgages and credit cards. It bottomed during the Great Recession at roughly $49 trillion in the first quarter of 2009.

Americans have been gradually recovering the wealth they lost to the recession. But it remains about 5 percent below its pre-recession peak of $66 trillion.

The Fed report also found that:

PAmericans' borrowing rose at an annual rate of 5.8 percent in the January-March quarter. It was the first time consumers have boosted their borrowing by at least 5 percent in two straight quarters since mid-2008, just before the financial crisis.

PHousehold debt dipped 0.4 percent last quarter. Americans have been steadily shrinking their debt loads for the past four years.

PHome mortgage debt, which has been declining since 2008, fell an additional 2.9 percent. But the drop can be deceiving. Mortgage debt is falling mainly because many Americans have defaulted on payments and lost homes to foreclosure — not just because people are paying off loans.

PCorporate debt jumped 7.2 percent, the ninth straight increase. But corporations also boosted their cash stockpiles 0.7 percent to a near-record $1.74 trillion. Their rising cash levels reflect their wariness about expanding and hiring in an uncertain economy. The Fed had previously estimated corporate cash at $2.2 trillion in the October-December quarter but has since updated its data.

PFederal government debt grew at an annual rate of 12.4 percent. That was slower than all but two other quarters since the 2008 market meltdown. By contrast, state and local government debt declined at a 1.8 percent annual rate. This debt has been shrinking since 2010 as states and localities cut costs after the recession.

The overall gain in Americans' net worth was driven by the biggest quarterly rise in the S&P 500 stock index in 14 years, though the index has since shed about half that increase.

The surge in stocks didn't help as many Americans as it would have in the past. The percentage of U.S. households that own individual stocks or stock mutual funds declined to 46 percent last year, down from 59 percent in 2001, according to the Investment Company Institute.

For most American households, home equity, not stocks, represents their main source of wealth.

"It's a mixed outlook for the typical household," said Scott Hoyt, senior director of consumer economics at Moody's Analytics.

Consumers are more affected, Hoyt said, by other factors: a job market that's improving only fitfully, generally flat home values and gasoline that peaked near $4 a gallon in April but has since dropped to a national average of $3.56 a gallon.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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