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Understanding our services and fees when you work with an advisor

Achieving financial success requires knowing where to begin, what you’re working toward, and how to get there. At Merrill, we bring personalized advice, a clear plan and investing discipline to help you reach your goals. That means delivering straightforward advice so you know what we’re doing for you and how your investments are performing.

You have choices in how we work together, including how you receive advice, manage your account, and pay for our services. We’ll continue to develop innovative solutions that allow you to manage your investments the way you want, backed by our guidance and expertise.

Your dedicated advisor works with you to build a personalized approach based on your situation, preferences and goals. That approach can be implemented through an investment advisory, brokerage account, or a combination of both.


Merrill Lynch Investment Advisory Program (IAP)

Merrill Lynch Brokerage Account

What type of services do I receive?

Advice and guidance and ongoing monitoring of your investments, trade execution, and other advisory services

Access to investment recommendations, trade execution and research

Who makes the investment decisions?

Choice of whether you or your advisor manage the day-to-day investment decisions

You manage the day-to-day investment decisions and control trade authorizations

How do I pay for these services?

An annual fee based on a percentage of the assets in your account

Fees based on individual transactions and/or other sales charges

Where do I find more information?

Learn more about IAP

Learn more about brokerage

We believe that the better informed you are, the better decisions you can make about what's right for you.

An advisor can explain all of this to you, or you can review the materials below to help you understand your options and how we charge for advice, services and solutions.

For a complete overview of the programs and services available, please explore the Summary of Programs and Services.

For clarity around fees, charges and other compensation for our advice and services at Merrill Lynch, please see our Explanation of Fees and the Schedule of Account & Service Fees.

3 Questions to Ask Your Advisor

  1. How do Brokerage Accounts and Investment Advisory Accounts differ?
  2. What factors should I be thinking about when deciding which account type to use, based on my goals?
  3. What types of fees are right for my needs?

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