The GCCA Group

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Merrill lynch

The GCCA Group

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Welcome to The GCCA Group

Seasoned financial advice and guidance. Broad wealth management strategies.

The GCCA Group is a 11-person team of highly skilled and dedicated financial professionals. We serve a limited number of affluent individuals and they have entrusted us with approximately $2 billion in client balances as of June 28, 2017. Since 1982, we’ve striven to deliver personalized client service and strong investment results.

Over the years, we have carefully sought out, hired and trained our people to add value to each client relationship. Our group prides itself on being both large and small: large enough to access the resources and capabilities of Merrill Lynch and small enough to foster the intimacy and customization that clients expect and deserve.

We provide insightful, individualized advice and guidance to clients in need of:
• Tax minimization strategies
• Wealth accumulation
• Asset preservation
• Retirement income planning and cash flow analysis
• Effective wealth distribution and gifting strategies
• Philanthropic planning services through U.S. Trust


Our Achievements

Our leader, Christopher Cook, has been recognized in several publications including:

Forbes "America's Top Wealth Advisors" (2016 and 2017)

Barron's "American's Top 1200 Financial Advisors: State-by-State" (2009-2018)

Financial Times "Top 400 Financial Advisors" (2013, 2014 and 2016)


*Source: Forbes "America's Top 250 Wealth Advisors" list, September 2017. For more information about the selection criteria, go to http://details-he.re/Kp7gMH. Forbes is a trademark of Forbes Media LLC. All rights reserved. The ranking or ratings shown here may not be representative of all client experiences because they reflect an average or sampling of the client experiences. These rankings or ratings are not indicative of any future performance or investment outcome. 
*Source: The Financial Times Top 400 Financial Advisors (FT 400) is an independent listing produced by the Financial Times (March, 2017). For more information about the selection criteria, go to http://details-he.re/fWZZLQ. The ranking or ratings shown here may not be representative of all client experiences because they reflect an average or sampling of the client experiences. These rankings or ratings are not indicative of any future performance or investment outcome. 
*Source: Barron's "Top 1,200 Financial Advisors" list, March 12, 2018. For more information about the selection criteria, go to http://details-he.re/M6jwj7. Barron's is a trademark of Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All rights reserved. Rankings and recognition from Barron's are no guarantee of future investment success and do not ensure that a current or prospective client will experience a higher level of performance results and such rankings should not be construed as an endorsement of the advisor.

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Our Approach to Wealth Management

In our role as your wealth management advisor, we use a goals-based approach to help you articulate and prioritize your objectives. Once we develop a strategy together that's aligned with your tolerance for risk, we can help you implement it, and review and monitor your progress.


Establish Objectives
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We begin by forming a conceptual understanding of you, your family and the context of your business and professional life. We discover what really matters to you. We look at your financial life in total and together we establish a working list of objectives, such as funding higher education expenses, retirement income planning and passing your wealth to the next generation.


Set Strategy

After we get a clear picture of where you want to go, we chart a course to help you get there. We help you build a strategy that incorporates your time horizon, your risk tolerance, liquidity needs and realistic expectations about investment performance. We also take into account strategic needs for wealth preservation and wealth building.


Implement Strategies

We make investment recommendations thoughtfully and deliberately. To help you make more informed investment decisions, we use BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research to carefully analyze and compare investment managers, including mutual funds, before allocating any portfolio assets to them. For portfolios that we manage, we consider both purchases and sales of any investment products on a client-by-client basis, and will work with your outside tax advisor on the timing and tax consequences of any transaction. Our goal is to develop a relationship with you based on t
rust, open communication and accountability.

*Source: Barron's "Top 1,200 Financial Advisors" list, March 12, 2018. For more information about the selection criteria, go to http://details-he.re/M6jwj7. Barron's is a trademark of Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All rights reserved. Rankings and recognition from Barron's are no guarantee of future investment success and do not ensure that a current or prospective client will experience a higher level of performance results and such rankings should not be construed as an endorsement of the advisor.

*Any information presented in connection with BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research is general in nature and is not intended to provide personal investment advice. The information does not take into account the specific investment objectives, financial situation and particular needs of any specific person who may receive it. Investors should understand that statements regarding future prospects may not be realized.

BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research is equity research produced by Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated and/or one or more of its non-U.S. affiliates. BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research does and seeks to do business with companies covered in its research reports. As a result, investors should be aware that the firm may have a conflict of interest that could affect the objectivity of this report. Investors should consider this report as only a single factor in making their investment decision.




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Our Wealth Allocation Philosophy

We address investment issues and help implement investment strategies for clients. Our philosophy is to isolate the asset allocation question and provide three channels for apportioning investment assets—wealth needs, wealth surplus and aspirational wealth.
Wealth Needs

We first concentrate on the lifestyle capital needs of clients. This portfolio is designed to help lower risk, preserve assets and provide reliable cash flow to clients. This generally involves investment in bonds including municipal bonds, intended to make the cash flow efficient and to balance risk. In general, we lean toward conservative portfolio structures, which align with our emphasis on generating cash and asset preservation.

Wealth Surplus

We aim for market level performance with wealth surplus and use a core approach for allocating assets within this segment. Diversification is the key to our equity portfolio recommendations and, in our view, that is a principal benefit of our core approach. We may recommend products including outside money managers and individual securities to help build the wealth surplus segment of your portfolio.

Aspirational Wealth

Once your wealth surplus needs are addressed, we consider your aspirational wealth. Generally, pursuing this objective assumes somewhat higher risk that's meant to capture upside potential and build wealth.

**Source: The Financial Times Top 400 Financial Advisors (FT 400) is an independent listing produced by the Financial Times (March, 2017). For more information about the selection criteria, go to http://details-he.re/fWZZLQ. The ranking or ratings shown here may not be representative of all client experiences because they reflect an average or sampling of the client experiences. These rankings or ratings are not indicative of any future performance or investment outcome. 

Insightful Strategies for Managing Your Portfolio

Relationships grow when you have the access and accountability you demand.

Managing wealth requires talent, experience and deep resources. We may recommend professional, fee-based managers, as well as our own strategies, to manage your assets.

To identify and help you select outside portfolio managers we believe are most suited to your situation, we consider our own history with certain managers. We rely on Merrill Lynch analysts and consultants for evaluating and monitoring the performance, variability of returns and style consistency of asset managers available through Merrill Lynch, and for performing due diligence reviews of their operations.

We provide clients with access to the resources of BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research, and Christopher Cook and William Samay also offer discretionary portfolio management—when clients grant us that authority—through the Merrill Lynch Investment Advisory Program. Chris and William are qualified Portfolio Managers who, in addition to providing traditional advice and guidance, can help clients pursue their objectives by building and managing their own personalized or defined strategies, which may incorporate individual stocks and bonds, Merrill Lynch model portfolios, and third-party investment strategies. When servicing clients through the firm’s Investment Advisory Program, Portfolio Managers may manage their strategies on a discretionary basis.

Our group does not have a "rigid" structure. We function as a team to help you benefit from the knowledge and insight of our entire group. Although you have a lead contact, any of us can assist you when you call with a question or request.


*Any information presented in connection with BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research is general in nature and is not intended to provide personal investment advice. The information does not take into account the specific investment objectives, financial situation and particular needs of any specific person who may receive it. Investors should understand that statements regarding future prospects may not be realized. BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research is equity research produced by Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated and/or one or more of its non-U.S. affiliates. BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research does and seeks to do business with companies covered in its research reports. As a result, investors should be aware that the firm may have a conflict of interest that could affect the objectivity of this report. Investors should consider this report as only a single factor in making their investment decision. 

  • As a group, we offer perhaps our most important product: a collective wisdom that is intended to benefit each client relationshipChristopher Cook

Meet Our Group

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

Your Financial Strategy

We offer you access to the investing insights of Merrill Lynch, trust and fiduciary services from U.S. Trust, and the banking convenience of Bank of America to help you pursue your goals. We will work to help you stay on track, regardless of what the markets are doing.

FAMILY
FAMILY
Taking care of your family and other people in your life
  • Trust & Estate Services2
  • Education Funding Strategies1
  • Insurance3
HEALTH
HEALTH
Planning for healthcare expenses now and in the future
  • Long-term Care Insurance3
  • Health Savings Account2
  • Disability Insurance3
HOME
HOME
Upsizing, downsizing, remodeling or buying a vacation home
  • Home Loans2
  • Home Equity Lines of Credit2
  • Securities-Based Lending2
  • Credit Cards2
WORK
WORK
Working in retirement, selling or starting a business
  • Bank of America Business Banking2
  • Exchange Funds1
  • Concentrated Stock Management1
  • Succession Planning1
LEISURE
LEISURE
Spending your free time in meaningful ways
  • Credit Cards2
  • Securities-Based Lending2
  • Structured Lending2
GIVING
GIVING
Volunteering, mentoring others and giving to charities
  • Donor-Advised Funds2
  • Private Foundations2
  • Charitable Trusts2
FINANCE
FINANCE
Using your finances to bring it all together
  • Merrill Lynch Investment Accounts1
  • Investment Advisory Accounts1
  • Alternative Investments1
  • Exchange-Traded Funds1
  • Mutual Funds1
  • Closed-end Funds1
  • Fixed Income Products1
  • Options1
  • Annuities3
  • Impact Portfolios1
  • Market-Linked Investments1
  • Securities-Based Lending2
  • Margin1
  • Home Loans2
  • Bank of America Checking and Savings Accounts2
  • Credit Cards2
  • Online Account Access1,2

1Investment products are offered by Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated.
2Banking products are offered by Bank of America, N.A.
3Insurance and annuity products offered through Merrill Lynch Life Agency Inc.

Staying on Track

We understand that both your life and the financial markets can change over time. By periodically checking in to discuss changes in your life and revisiting your financial strategy, our goal is to help give you peace of mind* that you're on track to help achieve what's most important to you.

Regular reviews to help you stay on track
Regular reviews to help you stay on track

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

  • Sample client review agenda
  • Sample Wealth Outlook Report
Monitoring changes in your life and to your goals
Monitoring changes in your life and to your goals

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

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Access to what you need, when you need it

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

  • Your advisor is never more than a click away within our site or mobile apps
  • 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 Lynch’s asset aggregation tool

*Peace of mind is an aspirational state of mind that clients hope to achieve. There are no guaranteed results following completion of the Goals-Based Wealth Management process because markets can fluctuate and investments can lose value. Advisors work with clients to help them understand how the goals based wealth management process can help to address their concerns, financial situation and priorities.

Let’s Have a Conversation

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

Why Merrill Lynch?

As Merrill Lynch financial advisors, we will sort through the financial complexities of your life, helping you build a customized investment strategy to 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 financial advisor.





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Personalized advice from a dedicated financial advisor.

Getting to know you is our primary goal.

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

Drawing from our experience and the best thinking of Merrill Lynch, we will build a strategy that reflects your unique needs, priorities and financial situation.

Adjusting your plan as your life and the markets change.

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