Award Methodology

Third-party rankings and recognition from rating services or publications are no guarantee of future investment success. Working with a highly-rated adviser does not ensure that a client or prospective client will experience a higher level of performance or results. These ratings should not be construed as an endorsement of the adviser by any client, nor are they representative of any one client’s evaluation. Neither the firm nor any adviser paid a fee for the award.

Hank McLarty Named a Forbes Best-In-State Wealth Advisor for 2019

February 25, 2019 – We are proud to announce that Gratus Capital’s Founder and President Hank McLarty was named to Forbes’ Best-In-State Wealth Advisors list for 2019.

Developed by SHOOK Research, the Forbes Best-In-State Wealth Advisors list identified standout wealth advisors in each state, selecting from nearly 30,000 nominations. It assessed candidates on their industry experience, compliance records, revenue produced, and assets under management, as well as in-person and phone interviews.

The full Forbes rankings and additional award methodology information are available here.

The Forbes ranking of Best-In-Class Wealth Advisors, developed by SHOOK Research, is based on an algorithm of qualitative criteria, mostly gained through telephone and in-person due diligence interviews, and quantitative data. Those advisors that are considered have a minimum of seven years experience, and the algorithm weights factors like revenue trends, assets under management, compliance records, industry experience and those that encompass best practices in their practices, and approach to working with clients. Portfolio performance is not a criteria due to varying client objectives and lack of audited data. Neither Forbes nor SHOOK receive a fee in exchange for rankings. 

Listed as one of the Top 10 Georgia Financial Advisors and Wealth Managers

We were pleased to be named as one of the Top 10 Georgia Financial Advisors and Wealth Managers by AdvisoryHQ.

The ranking methodologies used to select top financial advisors, planners, and wealth managers by major publications, like Barron’s (US) and Citywire (UK), are highly focused on total assets under management (AUM), firm size, and the amount of revenue generated by an advisory firm.

To generate a more reflective ranking, AdvisoryHQ went beyond just analyzing AUM, revenue, and the size of a financial advisor, planner or wealth management firm.

AdvisoryHQ News developed a breakthrough, “Top-Down” Advisor Selection Methodology, which is based on an advisor’s fee structure, fiduciary duty, independence, transparency, level of customized service, history of innovation, quality of services provided, team excellence, wealth of experience, and a wide range of other factors.

Click here for a full description of the AdvisoryHQ Selection Methodology.

Gratus Capital Named to Forbes Top 100 Wealth Advisors For 2nd Year in A Row

Gratus Capital has been named to The Forbes ranking of America’s Top 100 Wealth Advisors for the second year in a row. Gratus Capital’s Founder & CEO Hank McLarty is listed 67th out of 100 top-performing peers. The Top 100 Wealth Advisors were selected from nearly 20,000 nominations and over 4,000 candidates invited to complete the Forbes survey.

The Forbes ranking of America’s Top Wealth Advisors was developed by SHOOK Research, a research organization focused on the quality of the advisor. It is based on advisor experience and an algorithm that measures both qualitative benchmarks gleaned through telephone and in-person interviews along with quantitative data. Specific factors that were examined include: revenue trends, assets under management, compliance records, use of team, client retention and best practices in working with clients.

“If we’re going to recommend advisors to the public, we have to make sure every advisor is high quality. When we meet with an advisor for a due diligence meeting, we are thinking to ourselves, “Is this someone we would recommend to a friend or family member?,” said R.J. Shook, president of SHOOK Research, about the ranking process in Forbes Magazine.

The full list of Top 100 Wealth Advisors will be featured in the October 24th print issue of Forbes magazine.

“We have built our business by focusing on our customers and providing responsive, thoughtful, accurate wealth management counsel,” said McLarty. “We understand we have an opportunity to play a significant role in helping clients to achieve their dreams and plan for the future, and we make them our mission. We are honored to be recognized by Forbes as a Top Wealth Advisor again this year, as another testament to the value and level of service we provide.”

A boutique wealth management firm focused on serving successful individuals, families, foundations and endowments, Gratus Capital caters to clients across the nation with a tailored team approach, low client to advisor ratio and fee-based advisory services.

What new financial goals do you have in mind? Contact us to learn how we can help.

Developed by Shook Research, Forbes ranking based on overall quality of practice and algorithm of qualitative/quantitative data received in nominations from professionals from financial services, banks, brokerages, custodians, insurance, clearing houses and registered investment advisers. Criteria includes client retention, industry experience, compliance records, firm nominations, AUM, and revenue generated for firms. Seven years minimum advisors experience.

The above article is intended to provide generalized financial information; it does not give personalized tax, investment, legal, or other professional advice. Before taking any action, you should always seek the assistance of a professional who knows your particular situation for advice on taxes, your investments, the law, or any other matters that affect you or your business.

Gratus Capital ranked in Forbes Top 100 Wealth Advisors in the U.S.

August, 12, 2016—Gratus Capital, one of the Southeast’s premier wealth management firms, recently earned a spot on the Forbes Top 100 Wealth Advisors list. Specifically, Gratus Capital was ranked 59th out of 100 top-performing peers. This selection was made from a pool of over 11,000 nominations received, and approximately 4,000 candidates invited to complete the Forbes survey.

“As a firm, we are honored and gratified to have been included,” said McLarty. “It’s a testament to the value of our Gratus mission—providing exceptional wealth management that’s high-touch and thoroughly personalized. The Forbes results are proof positive we’re delivering on that mission.”

Gratus’ rank was determined by a detailed methodology involving qualitative and quantitative data. In terms of quality of practice, Forbes’ algorithm evaluated client retention figures, industry experience, compliance records, and firm nominations. On the quantitative side, analysts weighed factors like assets under management and the amount of revenue advisors generated for their firms.

“This mention is another big win to add to a growing list,” said McLarty, citing Gratus’ recent awards as one of the Top 10 Georgia Financial Advisors and among the Largest Fee-Only Registered Investment Advisory Firms in the U.S. “But recognition isn’t what drives us. Ultimately it’s about our clients’ financial security, retirement plans, and legacy goals.”

The full list of Top 100 Wealth Advisors will be featured in the August 23, 2016 print issue of Forbes magazine.

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Named Top Steward for its Select Group of Clients

Published By AdvisoryHQ . Updated | July 12, 2015 11:29 pm

This review is a follow-up of AdvisoryHQ’s Top 10 Financial Advisors and Wealth Managers in Atlanta, Georgia publication. After going through our rigorous Breakthrough Financial Advisor Selection Methodology, Gratus Capital was selected as one of this year’s top rated Atlanta financial advisors.

Selecting Top Advisors and Wealth Managers:

As part of our selection methodology in identifying top financial advisors, AdvisoryHQ News reviews a wide range of factors, including a financial advisor’s fee schedule, fiduciary classification, scale, personalization, scope of services, experience level, transparency, and level of customized approach.

Click here for additional details on our selection process.

Jon Houk, CFP® Named Five Star Wealth Manager 2016 Award Winner

Published By Five Star Professional

Five Star Professional employed a rigorous research process to identify the Five Star Wealth Manager Award winners in the Atlanta area. Award-winning professionals were carefully selected from among thousands of wealth managers for their knowledge, service and expertise.

Award winners represent an exclusive group of wealth managers who have demonstrated excellence in their field by satisfying 10 objective selection criteria.

The Five Star Wealth Manager award, administered by Crescendo Business Services, LLC (dba Five Star Professional), is based on 10 objective criteria. Eligibility criteria – required: 1. Credentialed as a registered investment adviser or a registered investment adviser representative; 2. Actively licensed as a registered investment adviser or as a principal of a registered investment adviser firm for a minimum of 5 years; 3. Favorable regulatory and complaint history review (As defined by Five Star Professional, the wealth manager has not; A. Been subject to a regulatory action that resulted in a license being suspended or revoked, or payment of a fine; B. Had more than a total of three settled or pending complaints filed against them and/or a total of five settled, pending, dismissed or denied complaints with any regulatory authority or Five Star Professional’s consumer complaint process. Unfavorable feedback may have been discovered through a check of complaints registered with a regulatory authority or complaints registered through Five Star Professional’s consumer complaint process; feedback may not be representative of any one client’s experience; C. Individually contributed to a financial settlement of a customer complaint; D. Filed for personal bankruptcy within the past 11 years; E. Been terminated from a financial services firm within the past 11 years; F. Been convicted of a felony); 4. Fulfilled their firm review based on internal standards; 5. Accepting new clients. Evaluation criteria – considered: 6. One-year client retention rate; 7. Five-year client retention rate; 8. Non-institutional discretionary and/or non-discretionary client assets administered; 9. Number of client households served; 10. Education and professional designations.

Wealth managers do not pay a fee to be considered or placed on the final list of Five Star Wealth Managers. Award does not evaluate quality of services provided to clients. Once awarded, wealth managers may purchase additional profile ad space or promotional products.

The Five Star award is not indicative of the wealth manager’s future performance. Wealth managers may or may not use discretion in their practice and therefore may not manage their client’s assets. The inclusion of a wealth manager on the Five Star Wealth Manager list should not be construed as an endorsement of the wealth manager by Five Star Professional or this publication.

Working with a Five Star Wealth Manager or any wealth manager is no guarantee as to future investment success, nor is there any guarantee that the selected wealth managers will be awarded this accomplishment by Five Star Professional in the future. For more information on the Five Star award and the research/selection methodology, go to