Investing: Where do I even start?

In this #WomenInvested Meet Up, hear tips on how to begin your investing journey – or take it to the next level

Watch now

Merrill lynch

Johnson Evans & Associates

Learn more about an advisor's background on
FINRA's BrokerCheck

Merrill Lynch
Wealth Management


Rather than trying to be all things to all people,
we have attracted an elite clientele for our ability
to provide specialized financial knowledge,
complementary skillsets and a higher standard of care.

Welcome

At Johnson Evans and Associates, our family-office-style approach is meant to serve accomplished people who hope to accomplish more. Many clients come to us after a previous advisor provided only a basic portfolio strategy and “calendar-timed” communications.

Who do we serve? Venture capitalists, private equity and other executives in the financial industry, medical specialists, serial entrepreneurs, business owners and generations of families around Charlotte and across the nation.

While diverse in their ambitions, clients typically share a desire to engage, listen and trust. This suits us well, as we are devoted to educating and helping clients plan for key financial decisions surrounding the sale of their companies, diversification of concentrated stock positions, and tax-efficient ways to pass along wealth.

What do we believe?

 

  • The depth and breadth of our multi-generational planning and investment approach distinguishes our practice and the enduring benefits our clients can enjoy.

 

  • Given that our clients’ life experiences and attitudes toward wealth are clearly their own, we don’t make assumptions. Instead, we make time to understand their mindsets and motivations.

 

  • As active listeners, we learn about clients by asking questions – not just in initial discussions, but over the course of each relationship, “What is your vision of a meaningful life? What has worked well and what do you wish had worked better? Who are you responsible for – a child, an elderly parent, your employees? Why have you come to us – and why now?”

 In addition to a client’s goals, we look for “holes” in their financial picture – areas that may need further examination – trust documents, liabilities and insurance, for example.

Truth be told, estate planning is an area in which we focus intensely and have extensive skills. That is why we ask for the names of clients’ CPAs and attorneys, to align our tax minimization and estate planning strategies – and save clients the time of coordinating our efforts.

When it comes to investments, we look beyond traditional asset allocations and emphasize the use of alternative investments including real estate, private equity and hedge funds. Why? Because these non-correlated assets move independently from the markets – allowing clients to help mitigate overall portfolio risk and benefit from opportunities not commonly available. Our proactive recommendations are driven by internal and external research, third-party managers we’ve known for years, and discussions with other firms.

Finally, we have managed our clients’ money and emotions amid the volatility of 2000, 2008, 2020 and 2022. Virtually all of those clients remain with us today. We believe that’s due in large part to our focus on mitigating investment risk and tax consequences






*Merrill, its affiliates, and financial advisors do not provide legal, tax, or accounting advice. You should consult your legal and/or tax advisors before making any financial decisions.


*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.

*Asset allocation does not ensure a profit or protect against loss in declining markets.

*BofA Global Research is research produced by BofA Securities, Inc. (“BofAS”) and/or one or more of its affiliates. BofAS is a registered broker-dealer, Member SIPC, and wholly owned subsidiary of Bank of America Corporation

ATTENTION YOU MAY NOT EXPECT, BUT CERTAINLY DESERVE.

 

At Johnson Evans & Associates, we characterize our offering as a rich repository of knowledge and best practices. However, our capabilities mean little if we don’t stay on top of your needs – and respond to those needs, in a timely manner.

 

As our client, you can expect that we will: 

 

Be ready to serve you. By limiting the number of clients that we assist, we can do more for you. That means serving as proactive stewards of your wealth, with plenty of time to address your needs.

 

Talk with you frequently about financial matters and other topics that matter to you. We also look forward to sharing our personal stories and hope to hear yours.

 

Work to ensure that your wealth and wisdom are passed along to your children. Often, our efforts include gathering family members for discussions, so that your work ethic and values can be shared and understood.

 

Help you make informed decisions and avoid emotional ones. Our proactive efforts are meant to help you “see around corners” – so that you can plan and prepare for situations you anticipate and those you don’t.


Do our best work when your needs grow in complexity. We enjoy meeting challenges and crafting potential solutions. 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 real-world scenarios with you.

 

Be here, when you need us most. We have sat with clients in hospitals and celebrated with them at weddings and anniversary parties. Many clients have become good friends. We see ourselves as “life advisors” as much as “financial advisors.”

 

Strive to help you optimize both sides of your balance sheet – assets and liabilities. We offer cash management and credit strategies, and access to Bank of America, N.A. for residential, securities-based lending and practice management solutions (for medical professionals).

 

Align our tax minimization and estate planning strategies with those of your CPA and attorney. We can also call upon our firm’s trust professionals to offer assistance.

 

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 clients we’ve assisted in similar positions. 


*Banking products are provided by Bank of America, N.A. and affiliated banks, Members FDIC and wholly owned subsidiaries of Bank of America Corporation.
*Trust, fiduciary, and investment management services are provided by Bank of America, N.A., Member FDIC, and wholly owned subsidiary of Bank of America Corporation (“BofA Corp.”), and its agents.
*Merrill, its affiliates, and financial advisors do not provide legal, tax, or accounting advice. You should consult your legal and/or tax advisors before making any financial decisions.

EXIT AND SUCCESSION PLANNING

 

At Johnson Evans & Associates, our deep experience with exit and succession planning strategies helps us identify key issues for business owners before decisions need to be made. For both startups and established companies, we help owners build on their visions of success – by balancing short- and long-term considerations and answering questions including the following:

 

What type of financial legacy do you want to leave?

If you’ll be “passing along” your business to family members, are they prepared and willing to take the reins?


If you’re planning to sell to employees, do they have enough money and share your values?

After the transaction, how do you envision your daily life? Do you want to keep working at your company, start a new venture, give back to the community, or just kick back?

Do you have a buy/sell agreement or other contracts in place? Or do you only have a “handshake” deal?

Do you have key-man insurance for a partner?


Does your biggest client relationship depend on you being there?

 

Once questions are answered, we can help:

 

Develop a customized financial strategy to optimize the sale of your business and help ensure that your overall financial plan aligns with your legacy and charitable goals, professional ambitions and desired lifestyle.

 

Design a tax-efficient strategy for your business sale that can help reduce capital gains taxes and other tax obligations associated with the transaction.

 

Integrate your business sale into your overall investment and estate plan – coordinating with our network of CPAs and attorneys. This collaboration can help ensure that your wealth is transferred according to your wishes while minimizing estate taxes.

 

Create or adjust your retirement plan (if your goal is to retire post-sale) and help estimate retirement income, set up accounts, and manage withdrawals.

 

Help you obtain an independent business valuation, as well as potential buyers.

 


*Banking products are provided by Bank of America, N.A. and affiliated banks, Members FDIC and wholly owned subsidiaries of Bank of America Corporation.
*Trust, fiduciary, and investment management services are provided by Bank of America, N.A., Member FDIC, and wholly owned subsidiary of Bank of America Corporation (“BofA Corp.”), and its agents.
*Merrill, its affiliates, and financial advisors do not provide legal, tax, or accounting advice. You should consult your legal and/or tax advisors before making any financial decisions.

Recognition

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.

Matthew Evans

Forbes “Best-in-State Wealth Management Teams” 2023 and 2024
Published annually in January. Rankings based on data as of March 31 of prior year.*

Forbes "Best-in-State Next-Generation Wealth Advisors" 2019, 2022
Published annually Aug - Sept. Rankings based on data as of March 31 of current year.

Forbes "Top Next-Generation Wealth Advisors" 2018
Published on July 25, 2018. Rankings based on data as of March 31, 2018.

Keith S Johnson

Forbes “Best-in-State Wealth Management Teams” 2023 and 2024
Published annually in January. Rankings based on data as of March 31 of prior year.*

Who We Are

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.

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.

Ryan Thrower

Wealth Strategies Advisor

Bank of America, N.A.

Trent Hoover

Wealth Management Lending Officer

Bank of America, N.A.

NMLS #198530

Yolanda Tolton

Wealth Management Banking Specialist

Merrill

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.


      MLBrochure.png

      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.

      Anthem video thumb.jpg 
      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.