FA-IQ reached out to advisors to ask: Are you for or against recommending cryptocurrencies to your clients?

Gerald Goldberg, chief executive officer and co-founder of GYL Financial Synergies. West Hartford, Connecticut-based Goldberg has been in the industry for 26 years and has about $9 billion in client assets.

“While we understand and embrace the potential associated with blockchain technology, to date we have avoided recommending to our clients that they invest in cryptocurrency.

Our responsibility as fiduciaries is to listen to our clients to understand their needs. Based on this understanding, we then construct diversified portfolios that will assist them in achieving their goals while at the same time mitigating risk to the extent possible.

Gerald Goldberg
With that framework in mind, to date, we haven’t been satisfied that cryptocurrency has satisfied our criteria from a risk and reward perspective.

We continue to believe that the high level of volatility combined with the lack of consistent regulatory framework contributes to a highly speculative environment that is not consistent with our investment philosophy.”

Jim Pratt-Heaney, founding partner of Coastal Bridge Advisors. Westport, Connecticut-based Pratt-Heaney has been in the industry for more than 30 years and has $2.85 billion in client assets.

Jim Pratt-Heaney
“While our investment committee invests time studying these markets and ways to take part, I do not currently include crypto as a part of our firm’s otherwise custom portfolios, but instead have found ways for those clients who want to invest to do so as safely as possible. Importantly, many custodians will not hold crypto and this can complicate investment recommendations.”

Brett Bernstein, chief executive officer and founder of XML Financial Group. Rockville, Maryland-based Bernstein has been in the industry for 23 years and has $3.7 billion in client assets.

Brett Bernstein
“I believe cryptocurrency is a real force and is something, for the right client, which can be appropriate in their asset allocation. However, due to the lack of regulatory oversight, risks and volatility, clients really need to fully understand what it is, why they have it and the risk of it.”

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