Investing: Where do I even start?

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Key Employee Services & 10b5-1 Services

Global Corporate & Institutional Advisory Services
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Merrill Lynch
Wealth Management


When it comes to finances, we all need advice and guidance from time to time. Senior leaders and directors must navigate the complexity of varied compensation vehicles, investments within and outside of benefit plans, unique tax and estate planning needs, and filing requirements. Getting the right help is critical. That’s why GCIAS offers plan sponsors a dedicated team of Financial Advisors and Key Employee Services professionals who focus on providing this sophisticated support.

Meeting the Unique Needs of Senior Leaders

Key Employee Services

  • Rule 10b5-1 Trading Plans. If offered by your company, Rule 10b5-1 trading plans may provide for systemic trading of company stock and are intended to demonstrate that trading is not on the basis of material, nonpublic information about the issuer or the issuer’s securities. These plans can assist executives with concentrated positions in company stock in carrying out a diversification strategy.
  • Block Trade Execution. Plan participants selling large blocks of shares (e.g., 10,000 or more) may benefit by consulting a GCIAS Financial Advisor or Key Employee Services professional prior to executing the transaction. Trades of large blocks of shares can be facilitated through Merrill’s Special Equities Trading group.
  • Equity Award Analysis. This service can help U.S. participants with stock options make informed decisions about their equity compensation. An Award Analysis report includes a high-level summary of equity awards based on information from Award Choice® (Merrill’s equity award platform), valuations of equity awards (including intrinsic value, after-tax value, and Black-Scholes value), a comparative analysis of changes to stock option values based on change to modeled dates and market prices, and modeling and valuation techniques to help articulate the intrinsic and time value of stock options.
  • Proactive Account Notices. Plan participants can be contacted by telephone to notify them about a particular situation related to their stock awards that requires the participant’s attention.
  • Beneficiary Support. The grief of losing a loved one is trying enough, but the financial challenges that come with a significant lifecycle event exacerbate an already difficult time. Working with plan sponsors, we offer beneficiaries special support to help them assess their financial situation, maximize available employer benefits and other resources, and develop a wealth management strategy for the transition and beyond. A dedicated telephone line and proactive, sensitive outreach minimize the stress of tacking these issues.
  • Asset Consolidation and Selling Large Share Blocks. We can help key employees who wish to consolidate their equity holdings navigate Direct Registration Services, engage with transfer agents, and initiate DTC deliveries. Merrill’s Special Equities Trading Group may be helpful to employees selling large blocks of shares. This group seeks to achieve a more favorable execution price when compared to online systems.*
* There is no guarantee that the Special Equities Trading Group will be able to obtain a more favorable execution price. 

  • Rule 144 and Form 4 Support. Working with the issuer’s counsel and Merrill’s Executive & Equity Services group, our Key Employee Services team is approved to self-clear transactions that occur under rule 144. This generally results in a more timely execution and offers an automated process for reportable transactions. In addition, we can file documentation related to Rule 144 on behalf of the executive officer/affiliate and provide the issuer with a comprehensive transaction report for Form 4 that is disseminated to the public within 48 business hours.

Personalized Wealth Management Strategies

For needs that go beyond benefits education, a GCIAS Financial Advisor can work with an individual manager, executive or board member to develop a personalized, custom strategy designed to meet specific financial objectives, such as:
  • Traditional and alternative investments
  • Education funding
  • Caring for aging parents
  • Wealth transfer
  • Charitable giving
The personalized strategy, offered at no cost, can be implemented through Merrill or any other advisor.


*Some or all alternative investments may not be in the best interests for certain investors. Certain alternative investments carry significant risk and are not subject to the same regulatory oversight as mutual funds and other traditional investments. For these reasons, access to alternative investments may be limited to investors who are designated as sophisticated, high-net-worth investors.

Philosophy

We believe the best financial approach is the one that helps you pursue your goals. That's why, from the start, we talk about your aspirations and encourage you to ask questions about issues that matter most to you. Calculating how to manage future health care expenses? College on the horizon? Considering the sale of a business or purchase of a home? Preparing to pass your wealth to future generations? It all starts with a plan intended to help you manage, grow, and preserve your wealth today, while also considering the impact it can have for years to come. With access to the investment insights of Merrill and banking solutions from Bank of America, we will work with you to develop an approach designed to help address your financial needs.

Approach

Every relationship begins with a conversation, helping you identify and prioritize which goals matter most to you. Whether it's transferring wealth to the next generation, customizing your financial approach to help you pursue your passions, or providing advice and guidance to help you stay informed, we start by listening to learn more about you and your family.

Your approach to investing

Drawing upon research in the field of behavioral finance, Merrill developed the Investment Personality Assessment to help us get to know you better as an investor and potentially help you refine your own investing preferences. By gaining a deeper understanding of how you think and feel about investing through this assessment, we can customize the financial approach we develop together to help you pursue what matters most to you. Our Investment Personality Assessment is one of the ways to help us get to know you - to understand your goals and priorities. These questions will help us provide you with additional insights and resources.

Understanding your goals and priorities

Your life and goals change. We have tools to help you keep track of these changes so they can be reflected in your financial approach.

Capabilities

Merrill’s process is designed to help deliver a customized, comprehensive experience to assist you not only in wealth accumulation and preservation, but in areas that go beyond investments. Providing you with access to the investment insights of Merrill, trust and fiduciary services from Bank of America Private Bank, and the banking and lending solutions of Bank of America offers a way to help you manage all of the pieces of your financial life. Working one-on-one with a Merrill advisor means you have a single point of contact to help you with potential strategies for transferring wealth to the younger generation.

Focus On Individuals, Families and Small Businesses

We believe that financial success can be achieved when you’re able to make investment-related decisions and trade-offs that can help you reach personally meaningful goals. Whether you’re planning your retirement, saving to buy a home or funding a child’s education, the process begins by getting to know you and how you feel about the following:

  • Health: Managing healthcare expenses, now and in the future
  • Home: Upsizing, downsizing, remodeling or buying a vacation home
  • Family: Taking care of your family and other people in your life
  • Leisure: Spending your free time in meaningful ways
  • Giving: Volunteering, mentoring others and giving to charities
  • Work: Working in retirement, selling or starting a business
  • Finance: Bringing it all together and defining your financial goals

Success will be measured by the amount of progress you are making toward reaching your goals, making thoughtfully considered adjustments as events and conditions warrant.

This material should be regarded as general or educational information on healthcare or Social Security considerations and is not intended to provide specific healthcare or social security advice. If you have questions regarding your particular situation, please contact your legal or tax advisor.

Get To Know Us

Supported by the global resources of Merrill, our team is comprised of talented and experienced individuals committed to building strong client relationships based on trust and personalized service.

Staying on Track

We understand that both your life and the financial markets can change over time. By checking in to discuss changes in your life and revisiting your financial approach, our goal is to help you stay on track to achieve what's most important to you.



Reviews to help you
stay on track

We’ll meet with you to review your goals and the progress you’ve made toward reaching them. We’ll also discuss any adjustments needed to your financial approach to help you stay on course.



    Changes in your life
    and to your goals

    Your life and goals change. As these changes occur, we can update your approach to reflect them.

    #DigitalMerrill

    MyMerrill is your online destination for access to your financial information, secure communications, and a robust offering of tools and capabilities.

    Your advisor is a click away within our site or mobile apps

    You can manage account security with our customizable security capabilities such as touch ID, one time passcode, and other security features

    Access to your complete financial life is available with My Financial Picture, Merrill’s asset aggregation tool

      Let’s Have a Conversation

      Helping you reach your goals starts with getting to know you personally. Through understanding what matters most to you, together we can help you create a financial approach that reflects your personality. Only then can we offer an approach that is built around your life priorities and the advice you need to help you address fluctuations in the market and changes in your life. Let’s work together to help you achieve your goals.

      Why Merrill?

      As Merrill Lynch Wealth Management Advisors, we will sort through the financial complexities of your life, helping you build a customized investment approach to address your needs and pursue your goals.


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      We put you first, every day.
      Learn more about the dedicated one-on-one relationship you can have with a Merrill Lynch Wealth Management Advisor.

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      Transcript of Video 

      No question too big or moment too small
      For every question you have, every decision you make and every answer you need, we are with you to listen and help guide you along the many paths your life can take. Watch this video to see some questions we can address together.


      The Power of the Right Advisor®
      Working with a dedicated Merrill advisor means you get personalized investment strategies from Merrill plus access to comprehensive financial solutions only Bank of America can deliver.

      Personalized advice from a dedicated financial advisor.

      We get to know you and your family, your financial situation and what matters most to you.

      A comprehensive approach, built around your life’s priorities.

      Drawing from our experience and the best thinking of Merrill, together we will design an approach that reflects your unique needs, priorities and financial situation.

      Adjusting your investment approach as your life and the markets change.

      We will work to help you stay on track, regardless of what the markets are doing.