The new advisor benchmarking numbers are in from PriceMetrix and it looks like the industry spent last year figuring out how to do a little more with a lot less.
The average advisor boosted production by 1% in 2011, finding a way to bill clients another $5,300.
That's remarkable because average AUM per advisor actually dropped 7% to $74 million apiece.
In other words, the typical advisor edged up from earning an aggregate 67 basis points on the assets in 2010 to 72 basis points -- reflecting a greater emphasis on fee structures, most likely.
The lost AUM came primarily from small clients with under $250,000 to invest, which dropped off the radar.
Once again, the "mass affluent" market fails to come around for modern advisors?
Interestingly, this market is supposedly the reason some of the trade organizations like LIMRA are fighting the universal fiduciary standard.
They say that if commission-based brokers are forced to serve their clients' best interests, they'll simply stop serving the middle class.
This seems to be already happening.