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Profile

We Serve Clients By:

Being Strategic Thinkers That Help Get Things Done

The families we serve are predominantly self-made people from varied backgrounds and share at least one important characteristic -- they are all too busy to do it themselves. We use our ability to anticipate potential upcoming circumstances, identify issues they hadn't thought about, provide proper advice and work hard to get things done so they can go on with their lives.

Providing A Tailored Approach and Innovative Strategies
Our process goes beyond just investing. We devote a great deal of time to quantify each individual's risk tolerance. We focus on outcome-based objectives to help build a path toward accomplishing your personalized goals. Additionally, we offer customized banking, including credit and lending solutions, with alternative sources of collateral, through Bank of America.

Connectivity And Unmatched Access to Resources
We deliver the proper resources, as needed, from relationships built throughout the years. We have a network of experienced in-house and third-party strategists, analysts, investment bankers, family office service providers, family education and philanthropy advisors; as well as trust, estate and legacy planning professionals.

We offer clients a breadth of strategies, premier customer service and financial tools based on their unique circumstances. No matter what your goals may be, we begin by defining and prioritizing your financial goals based on the following seven areas:

Health: Managing healthcare expenses now and in the future
Home: Upsizing, downsizing, remodeling or buying a vacation home
Family: Take 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 by defining your financial goals
We also draw on our industry knowledge and experience to offer advice and guidance for strategies around the following:

Risk management
Trust and estate planning services
Wealth management
Providing access to Bank of America for credit and banking needs

Biography
Mike Barakat joined Merrill Lynch Wealth Management in 2012. His focus is on developing strategies and providing advice for individuals, their families and their businesses by understanding their short- and long-term financial objectives. By understanding their goals, Mike is able to provide tailored strategies to help them accomplish their goals in the most efficient manner.

Mike primarily works with private equity and financial services partners, corporate executives and medical professionals.

Mike holds the Chartered Financial Analyst® designation and is member of the CFA® Society of Chicago. He is a graduate of Indiana University, Kelley School of Business, holding degrees in Finance and Accounting. Mike is an avid Chicago and Hoosiers sports fan. He grew up locally in Naperville, IL and currently resides in the River North neighborhood with his wife, Deanna, and his son, Adam.

 

 

I follow the deep-seated Merrill tradition of participating in the communities we serve. This drives my interest in spending time volunteering with organizations in our community.

  • LANGUAGES

    English

  • EDUCATION

    Indiana University, Kelley School of Business

Professional Staff

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

Additional Resources

The following specialists do not make securities recommendations. Please contact your Merrill Lynch Wealth Management Advisor if you have questions about how a specialist might be able to assist you.

David Neumann

Senior Structured Credit Executive

Bank of America, N.A.

Kristen S Busciglio

Senior Wealth Management Lending Officer

Bank of America, N.A.

NMLS #559834

Jermaine Gomes

Retirement Specialist

Bank of America, N.A.

Where do we begin? It starts with you.

At Merrill Lynch Wealth Management, your financial advisor focuses on the things you care about most- family, goals and priorities - even as they change over the years.

Understanding Your Life

Welcome

As a Merrill Lynch Wealth Management Advisor, I offer advice based on your goals and priorities– for yourself, your family, and your business. Our goals-based wealth management approach places the investor at the center of our focus, not the market. I can help you understand the pros and cons of every decision and maintain discipline so you can pursue your goals. As your needs or market conditions change, I will continue to work with you to agree upon adjustments to your investment approach.

Philosophy

I 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. Worried about managing 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? With access to the investment insights of Merrill and the banking convenience of Bank of America, I will work with you to develop an approach designed to help address your financial needs.

Approach

My approach to investing is grounded in an understanding of you. It all begins with a conversation. I take the time to get to know you — your kids' names, how hard you worked to get where you are and how you define success. I'll work together with you to understand your investment personality, prioritize your goals and build a financial approach that reflects your needs. I believe investors can benefit from our advice, access to the investment insights offered by Merrill, trust and fiduciary services from Bank of America Private Bank and the banking convenience of Bank of America. When it comes to your success, there’s only one financial approach that really matters — yours.

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

Using the broad investing resources of Merrill, I can also assist with potential solutions for income management, education funding, retirement income planning, and guidance for executives with concentrated stock positions, traditional and alternative investments, wealth transfer and estate planning services. And with your permission we can also work closely with your other professionals, such as attorneys, accountants and specialists, to help you pursue your goals.

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

Focus On High-Net-Worth Individuals and Business Owners

I  offer clients a breadth of potential solutions, premier customer service and financial tools based on their unique circumstances.

No matter what your goals may be, I begin by helping you define and prioritize your financial goals based on the following seven areas:

  • 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 and giving to charities
  • Work: Working in retirement, selling or starting a business
  • Finance: Bringing it all together; defining your financial goals
I'll also draw on my industry knowledge and experience to offer:
  • Potential risk management solutions
  • Trust and estate planning services
  • Potential wealth management solutions
  • Access to Bank of America for your credit and banking needs
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.

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 I can help you create a financial approach that reflects your personality. Only then can I 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.

      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.