Schwab Reports Monthly Activity Highlights
The Charles Schwab Corporation released its Monthly Activity Report today. Company highlights for the month of August 2023 include:
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Commentary from the CFO
CFO Peter Crawford commented on recent company events and select trends, "Our Labor Day Weekend conversion of former Ameritrade clients was a tremendous success. The latest conversion weekend was approximately 40% larger than the May cohort in terms of total accounts and would by itself be the largest brokerage firm conversion in history. In total, we migrated $1.3 trillion in client assets from over 7,000 Registered Investment Advisory (RIA) firms and 3.6 million Retail accounts. Perhaps even more impressive, the amount of assets converted earlier this month was equivalent to the total Ameritrade client asset base at the time the acquisition was announced in late 2019. Following the Labor Day conversion, we have not observed any meaningful disruptions in the overall client experience and service volumes have already normalized to pre-conversion levels.
Our organic asset gathering remains solid. In an effort to share additional insight into recent net new asset (NNA) trends, today's release provides a break-out of asset flows for clients whose accounts were opened at Schwab versus those initially opened at Ameritrade. The break-out helps illustrate that core NNA from Schwab originated accounts continues to be robust - up 15% year-to-date relative to the same period in 2022.
As expected, firmwide NNA has been temporarily impacted by asset attrition from clients originating at Ameritrade. Currently, attrition levels are measurably better than what we communicated at the time we announced the acquisition in November 2019. The majority of these deal-related outflows have been attributable to Ameritrade RIA clients, including a select number of relationships that did not meet our criteria for an ongoing service relationship.
Regarding client cash trends, realignment activity in the first half of September has resulted in essentially neutral flows - or inflows generally equal to outflows. This comes after August, where we saw a brief uptick in client cash movement from transactional cash to higher yielding investment solutions offered at Schwab following the late July increase to the Fed Funds rate. This immediate, yet relatively transitory reaction has been common throughout the current tightening cycle.
Schwab's diversified financial model has enabled us to deliver strong results through a wide range of environments, including 33 consecutive quarters of GAAP pre-tax margin exceeding 35%. On an adjusted basis (1), we have posted a pre-tax margin of 40% or greater for 11 consecutive quarters and we expect to extend that streak to 12 when we report third quarter results next month."
This press release contains forward-looking statements relating to the Ameritrade client conversion; net new assets; asset attrition from clients originating at Ameritrade; client cash trends; financial results; and third quarter pre-tax margin. These forward-looking statements reflect management's expectations as of the date hereof. Achievement of these expectations and objectives is subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from the expressed expectations.
Important factors that may cause such differences include, but are not limited to, the risk that Ameritrade client transitions are not completed when expected or do not result in a positive client experience; asset attrition from clients originating at Ameritrade is higher than expected; client use of the company's advisory solutions and other products and services; general market conditions, including the level of interest rates and equity valuations; client cash allocation decisions; client sensitivity to rates; level of client assets, including cash balances; competitive pressures on pricing; capital and liquidity needs and management; balance sheet positioning relative to changes in interest rates; interest earning asset mix and growth; the level and mix of client trading activity; market volatility; securities lending; margin loan balances; the amount and timing of restructuring costs related to achieving incremental cost savings; and new or changed legislation, regulation or regulatory expectations, including the timing of the FDIC's enactment of a final rule relating to a special assessment and our recognition of the full amount of the special assessment in earnings upon such enactment. Other important factors include the company's ability to successfully implement integration strategies and plans; attract and retain clients and independent investment advisors and grow those relationships and client assets; develop and launch new and enhanced products, services, and capabilities, as well as enhance its infrastructure and capacity, in a timely and successful manner; hire and retain talent; support client activity levels; monetize client assets; manage expenses; and other factors set forth in the company's most recent reports on Form 10-K and Form 10-Q.
About Charles Schwab
The Charles Schwab Corporation (NYSE: SCHW) is a leading provider of financial services, with 34.4 million active brokerage accounts, 2.5 million corporate retirement plan participants, 1.8 million banking accounts, and $8.09 trillion in client assets as of August 31, 2023. Through its operating subsidiaries, the company provides a full range of wealth management, securities brokerage, banking, asset management, custody, and financial advisory services to individual investors and independent investment advisors. Its broker-dealer subsidiaries, Charles Schwab & Co., Inc., TD Ameritrade, Inc., and TD Ameritrade Clearing, Inc., (members SIPC, https://www.sipc.org), and their affiliates offer a complete range of investment services and products including an extensive selection of mutual funds; financial planning and investment advice; retirement plan and equity compensation plan services; referrals to independent, fee-based investment advisors; and custodial, operational and trading support for independent, fee-based investment advisors through Schwab Advisor Services. Its primary banking subsidiary, Charles Schwab Bank, SSB (member FDIC and an Equal Housing Lender), provides banking and lending services and products. More information is available at https://www.aboutschwab.com.
TD Ameritrade, Inc. and TD Ameritrade Clearing, Inc. are separate but affiliated companies and subsidiaries of TD Ameritrade Holding Corporation. TD Ameritrade Holding Corporation is a wholly owned subsidiary of The Charles Schwab Corporation. TD Ameritrade is a trademark jointly owned by TD Ameritrade IP Company, Inc. and The Toronto-Dominion Bank.
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