JANNEY MONTGOMERY SCOTT
VICE PRESIDENT, HEAD OF PRODUCT AND RESEARCH
What's top of your to-do list right now?
The expansion of our alternative investment platform is at the top of our list. We have a fairly robust offering of liquid alternatives, but we would like to expand the availability of solutions designed for both accredited and qualified purchasers. Our expansion will likely include greater access to private equity, hedge funds, direct real estate and credit strategies.
What is keeping you awake at night (work wise)?
The always-changing regulatory landscape is something that I often worry about. I am a big believer in not dwelling on things beyond your control, but the reality is that these changes can be forced upon our industry pretty quickly. The time and resources it requires to stay ahead can pull me away from the work that moves our business forward.
What fund had the most inflows in 2017?
The Pimco Income fund led the firm in both net and gross flows last year. Providing retirement income in a low interest rate environment has been a challenge that our financial advisors have faced for several years. Given this ongoing challenge and the average age of our client base, it’s no surprise that many of our top funds in terms of flows have an income-focused mandate.
Best meeting you've ever had?
It’s hard for me to pinpoint one meeting in particular, but I really enjoy due diligence meetings where the investment team is transparent and unassuming. As investment professionals, we all make mistakes. It’s refreshing to get good answers to questions about the mistakes that have been made and, more importantly, about the lessons that were learned as a result of them. One of the most attractive attributes of a portfolio manager is the ability to acknowledge their mistakes and improve their investment process as a result.
Worst meeting you've ever had?
The one that comes to mind is a lunch meeting where a portfolio manager showed up 90 minutes late and proceeded to order a multi-course meal even though everyone at the table had already finished their lunch. We all had to watch him eat his food as he repeatedly tried to leverage personal connections and a large expense account to land a spot on our recommended list.
If you weren't doing this job, what would you be doing?
I can’t think of a role I would rather have within the financial services industry, but things could have easily gone down a different path. I worked at golf courses all through high school and college and I nearly transferred schools to focus on that after my sophomore year of undergraduate studies. Had it not been for some nudging by an important mentor in my life, I may have had a career in golf resort management.
What are your interests outside of work?
I really enjoy hunting, fishing, hiking and golf. My wife and I are usually looking for reasons to get outside with our three boys and that’s how we spend most of our free time as a family.
If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would it be?
I would have to say China. I’m fascinated by its ancient culture and the rapid modernization of its society. China has incredible geographic diversity, from the Himalayas to its modern cities such as Shanghai and Beijing.
If we gave you $100,000, how would you invest it?
Income-producing real estate or other asset classes with low correlations to equity markets. As a wealth management professional, my income has a natural correlation to equity markets and the majority of my retirement savings are also invested in public equities.
Do you have any hidden talents?
I have a strange ability to remember unimportant details. I’m the guy who memorizes lines from movies or TV shows, and my Seinfeld trivia skills are pretty sharp.