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Robert Trigaux

Morgan Stanley's Forte makes Top 100 -- again


Barron's magazine is out this week with its annual ranking of the Top 100 financial advisors. Six Florida-based advisors made the list but only one -- Morgan Stanley's Ami Forte of Palm Harbor -- made the list from the Tampa Bay area. Here's Barron's story about the Top 100 and here's the actual list.

Forte made the list last year, too, earning a profile of how she did it in the St. Petersburg Times. Given the earth-shattering hit to the stock markets last fall, anybody making this list deserves an extra standing ovation. After all, 42 new advisors made the list this year, proof enough of the chaotic market. Forte, back again, is 84th on this year's Top 100 list. She was 81st  last year.

Interestingly, the Barron's story says advisors, after such a market meltdown, are rethinking the merits of investing's most fundamental mantra: Diversification.

Here's what caught my eye in the Times' profile of Forte: Her approach to her work day.

"I'm a little bit of a control freak," she acknowledged. "I don't do lunch. I'm very intense. I think lunch is a phenomenal waste of the business day."

Barron's says it culled its Top 100 list from more than 800 nominations from the investment firms. The magazine examined assets under management, the revenues that advisors generated, regulatory records and less-tangible things like community involvement. Investment returns aren't an explicit criterion, says Barron's, because advisors aren't required to file audited statements. The magazine stated:

"But honest advisors operating on this scale tend to have strong returns -- that's how they get and keep so many clients."

Morgan Stanley, where Forte works, celebrated its Top 100-listed advisors with a front page ad in today's Wall Street Journal, as well as regional ads saluting Forte individually in the St. Pete Times and Tampa Tribune.

(Forte photo by Douglas Clifford of the St. Petersburg Times.)

-- Robert Trigaux, Times Business Columnist

[Last modified: Tuesday, June 1, 2010 11:24am]


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