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Nelson Hallam Group

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Merrill Lynch
Wealth Management

Important video disclosures

We bring decades of experience and insight to generations of clients across the U.S. 
Our mission? To help them prosper financially and personally
by crafting multi-faceted strategies that allow them to fulfill visions
for their families, enterprises and employees.


At The Nelson Hallam Group, our perspective on wealth management has been shaped by more than 50 years of shared financial experience and a desire to provide the skills and sensitivity many clients do not expect, but certainly deserve.

The way we see it, our value extends well beyond dollars and cents. It’s best measured over time, by the delivery of highly purposed advice and guidance – offered with an authentic, personal touch.

As an established team, we’ve earned our stripes assisting a largely referred clientele of successful people who want to preserve and grow the wealth they’ve worked hard to achieve. A majority comes from previous advisors who did not deliver the desired levels of acumen and attention.

What makes us proud? Clients have not just brought us their challenges – they’ve also brought us holiday baskets, honey, homemade dishes, thank you cards, and the feeling that comes from serving good people who appreciate our knowledge, care and consideration.

Well-known in our community, we enjoy serving our neighbors and former schoolteachers, professionals beginning to accumulate wealth, active and retired business owners (with and without qualified retirement plans), their employees, and as many as three generations of families we’ve come to know. When possible, we work closely with both spouses, so that each can explain what holds meaning in their lives and understand the strategy we build on their behalf.

While diverse in their paths to our door, most clients have a conservative mindset in terms of risk tolerance and reasonable expectations for their investments. We share their perspective and don’t swing for home runs or chase trends. Instead, we rely on our experience and long-term investment approach – one that has allowed clients to navigate market volatility (especially in 1987, 2000, 2008 and 2020).

Day in and day out, we put a premium on frequent discussions that revolve around clients’ personal passions, as well as their financial situations and ambitions. We host meetings with entire families so that each stakeholder can contribute and appreciate an overall strategy. We also meet with employers and their employees – to help them build wealth that endures into their retirement years.

Our clients’ achievements and values have led to financial and personal success. We are proud to help manage their wealth responsibly and in the most respectful manner.


At The Nelson Hallam Group, we find that wisdom is our reward for a lifetime of listening, rather than talking. In fact, as seasoned advisors, we are often surprised by the expectations of new clients. Most have only an inkling of the capabilities we bring to the table.

Put simply, we listen to clients like a friend, and care for them like family. A hallmark of our approach has always been the comprehensive planning process that initiates each client relationship and continues over time. To learn, we ask questions – some expected, some not:

“Why are you here? Who are you, as a person? Why did you accumulate this money? Who should benefit from your wealth? Who are you responsible for – an elderly parent, a child, your employees? What’s missing in your financial picture? How can we help you? What do you want your retirement lifestyle to look like?” Helping clients articulate their definitions of a fulfilling life helps us work more effectively.

As active facilitators, we “sit next to clients,” not across from them. Put another way, we look at matters from each client’s perspective rather than our own. This reminds us to focus on results that hold meaning for clients and minimize their effort in achieving them.

Whether a client is at a “sweet spot” in their career and building wealth (and their family), nearing retirement, or pondering a new venture, we first help them visualize their full financial picture – from investments and liabilities, to tax situations, insurance coverage and philanthropic activities. Sometimes, we show that expected savings may fall short of a stated goal. In those cases, we may suggest a change in budgeting or working a bit longer.

From these analyses and conversations, a multi-pronged strategy evolves that embraces a client’s financial realities and personal preferences. Like those we serve, we are highly motivated. It is incumbent upon us to deliver tangible benefits and consistent value.

We also serve as a resource for clients. With little time to stay updated on market dynamics, tax regulations and their investments – let alone, where to find a good restaurant – most clients rely on us to manage their wealth and provide “neighborly input.” We’ve lived in Springfield for decades. It is common for us to recommend good mechanics, schools, and places to explore. During the pandemic, we proactively contacted clients, to ask about their physical and mental health – and offer financial reassurance.


At The Nelson Hallam Group, it’s natural for us to view financial matters from a family perspective. Given our heritage serving multiple generations, we don’t refer to clients as such. Rather, we think of them as “families” or “households” because that better reflects our approach.

When asked, we characterize our offering as a rich repository of knowledge and best practices. Privacy is a pillar of our offering. Still, when it can prove beneficial, we may share what others in a client’s peer group are doing. This not only leads to proven ideas for meeting an array of challenges, but ongoing education that can help family members learn and prosper.

As our client, you can expect that we will:

  • Put our heads together to scrutinize your overall wealth and its components. We will perform an in-depth analysis of your investment allocation with regard to diversification, risk, cash flow, and time horizon – to help us identify redundancies and exposures, and evaluate tax efficiencies.
  • Put your needs first, always. To us, that means serving as responsible stewards of your wealth, prioritizing your objectives and examining areas of your financial picture that may have been ignored previously. In short, we look at “goals and holes” in your financial life.
  • Strive to help you make informed decisions, not emotional ones. Our proactive efforts are meant to help you plan and prepare ahead of circumstances you can foresee and those you don’t.
  • Do our best work when your needs grow in complexity. We enjoy meeting challenges and helping you focus on the people and passions in your life. The more you ask us to do, the more value we can deliver.
  • Explain what actual outcomes look like – in simple terms, without needless financial jargon. Going beyond spreadsheets and simulations, we will illustrate and discuss real-world scenarios with you. 
  • Encourage you to share our long-term perspective on capital preservation with reasonable growth – in relationship to the risk you are willing to take. Your portfolio will reflect overall strategic input from our firm’s Chief Investment Office and model portfolios from managers we’ve known for years who are also carefully vetted by Merrill. Your customized portfolio may include equities, bonds, ETFs, and in some cases, alternative investments*.
  • Remind you to contact us with any and all financially related questions, or if you need our opinion on a financial or life circumstance. By doing our jobs well, we can bring you the perspective and time you need – to make informed decisions that are wise and unhurried. We see ourselves as “life advisors” as much as “financial advisors.”
  • To help optimize both sides of your balance sheet – assets and liabilities – we offer cash management and credit strategies, and access to specialists at Bank of America, N.A. for residential and securities-based lending solutions.
  • Align our tax minimization and estate planning strategies with those of your CPA and attorney, or a professional we can recommend. When beneficial, we can also call upon our firm’s trust professionals to offer assistance.

Finally, we rarely see situations we haven’t encountered. We feel fortunate to have long memories and relationships. It is our intention to help you benefit from others we’ve assisted in similar positions.

*The Chief Investment Office (CIO) provides thought leadership on wealth management, investment strategy and global markets; portfolio management solutions; due diligence; and solutions oversight and data analytics. CIO viewpoints are developed for Bank of America Private Bank, a division of Bank of America, N.A., (“Bank of America”) and Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated (“MLPF&S” or “Merrill”), a registered broker-dealer, registered investment adviser and a wholly owned subsidiary of BofA Corp. This information should not be construed as investment advice and is subject to change. It is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended to be either a specific offer by Bank of America, Merrill or any affiliate to sell or provide, or a specific invitation for a consumer to apply for, any particular retail financial product or service that may be available.

*Some or all alternative investment programs may not be in the best interest of certain investors. No assurance can be given that any alternative investment’s investment objectives will be achieved.

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Merrill is proud of our advisors who’ve received recognition from financial industry publications or directly from Bank of America Corporation. We believe they are setting the standard for exemplary client service.

Mark Nelson

James Hallam

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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.