The SMS Group

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Merrill Lynch

The SMS Group

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With our more than 40 years of combined experience at Merrill Lynch, clients have asked us to guide them through a number of economic and market conditions as well as the dynamic changes in their personal lives.

We look forward to showing how our insight and experience can work for you and your family.

The SMS Group

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An experienced team dedicated to helping clients pursue their goals

OFFERING A REFINED FORM OF FINANCIAL INSIGHT
Since 1998, The SMS Group at Merrill Lynch has offered successful corporate executives, entrepreneurs, affluent families and retirees a variety of customized and innovative strategies to help them manage their financial lives. Our approach is designed to help families prepare and enjoy their financial future.

PROVIDING HIGHLY RESPONSIVE CLIENT SERVICE
Our goal is to offer a quality service experience that clients and their children will value now and into the future. Frequency of meetings and client communication are individually tailored. We utilize this opportunity to review financial outlook, progress to goals and discuss appropriate strategy-based recommendations.

ACCESSING AN EXCEPTIONAL ARRAY OF FINANCIAL SERVICES
The SMS Group connects clients to the global investing insights of Merrill Lynch and access to the banking convenience of Bank of America. The resources our team has access to are broad and deep.

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Capabilities

In 1914, Charles Merrill said, “The interests of our customers must come first.” That’s a commitment that we still honor today. We feel Charles Merrill would be gratified to see how the business he founded continues to place a premium on service and commitment. With the investment insights of Merrill Lynch, and with access to the banking convenience of Bank of America, we can deliver services that can help you address virtually every financial challenge you face.

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Wealth management strategies for the road ahead

OUR PROCESS
We believe in a holistic, goals-based approach to wealth management. Our defined process creates a thorough, yet understandable roadmap with which your many financial decisions can be measured and communicated.

We gain a deep understanding of who clients are and what is most important to them. Whether the objective is growth, preservation or wealth transfer, The SMS Group is dedicated to helping clients steadily pursue that goal.

WEALTH PRESERVATION
We appreciate the time and effort needed to build wealth and understand that it is the cornerstone of any retirement lifestyle. Using a number of analytical tools, we help clients focus on managing overall portfolio risk, while keeping an eye on market volatility.

WEALTH TRANSFER
A detailed wealth transfer strategy is vital to the preservation and future control of assets. We work with CPAs, attorneys and other trusted professional advisors, with client permission, to help preserve assets while minimizing potential estate taxes.

In addition, we provide access to U.S. Trust and its specialists to assist in creating a simplified and consolidated wealth transfer strategy.

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Investment strategies customized to individual objectives

We understand that markets will cycle over time. We also understand that each and every client is unique. Therefore our investment strategy recommendations are driven by client goals, risk tolerance, time horizon, and liquidity needs. Every investment recommendation has a specific role designed to help clients move one step closer to their goals.

ASSET ALLOCATION & DIVERSIFICATION
We believe that asset allocation is an important driver behind investment performance over time. We work to help create a customized asset allocation strategy that is specific to client goals and needs. We look to reduce portfolio volatility by accessing hundreds of investment managers and diversifying over a number of asset types. These include cash, bonds, stocks, commodities, real estate and other alternative investments.

REBALANCING, REVIEW & MONITORING
Our process provides for periodic rebalancing of portfolios and maintaining regular portfolio reviews to measure client progress relative to goals and objectives. Monitoring changes in both the markets and clients' personal lives enables us to address any unexpected challenges in a timely manner.

DISCRETIONARY MANAGEMENT
Along with our standard investment platforms, we also offer clients the option to participate in our discretionary investment program. Jerry and Greg 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. This discretion allows them to respond to market changes, price volatility and global events, as well as changes in your personal circumstances, to help you stay on track to help meet your financial goals. Clients, we believe, find this flexibility beneficial to their managing for risk.

*Some or all alternative investments may not be suitable 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.

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Retirement planning services to help clients enjoy the life they've built

DESIGNING YOUR IDEAL RETIREMENT
Many retirees wonder if their money will last through retirement. Utilizing the refined analytical tools of Merrill Lynch and our extensive experience and skills, we help clients assess the appropriate approach to retirement. This helps clients remain on track toward their specific retirement goals.

SIMPLIFYING RETIREMENT
Our team assists clients in organizing their financial lives. Working to consolidate assets as part of an overall retirement income and wealth transfer strategy can create cost efficiency and bring clarity to the wealth management process.

PREPARING FOR THE UNEXPECTED
At any moment, the unexpected can occur. Our team works with clients to develop contingencies to deal with the loss of primary income, long-term illness or disability. We also suggest various insurance strategies that can help mitigate the impact of an unforeseen event.

  • By offering strategies that include access to cash management, credit and lending through Bank of America, we can help create an individualized financial strategy designed to meet liquidity needs, everyday expenses, big purchases and unexpected events—all without disrupting your long-term investment strategy.Gregory Schaller, CRPC® | First Vice President | Senior Financial Advisor

Meet the Team

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

Gerald R Mc Cue

Gerald R Mc Cue

Senior Financial Advisor

585.899.2667
Gregory J Schaller

Gregory J Schaller

Senior Financial Advisor

585.899.2682
Jennifer  Knapp

Jennifer Knapp

Analyst Relationship Management

585.899.2677
Nicole  Gillette

Nicole Gillette

Client Associate

585.899.2679
Julie  Camp

Julie Camp

Client Associate

585.899.2730

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.