Fisher Investments began in 1979 as a money management firm primarily serving U.S. institutional investors. The firm formalized a portfolio management service for high-net-worth individuals in 1995, and began offering its services in Canada and the United Kingdom in 2000.
At year-end 2015, Fisher Investments had over $63 billion in assets under management (AUM) across its client groups. It manages approximately $33 billion in assets for 27,000 wealthy investors, and $28 billion in assets for more than 150 institutional investors around the world. Its subsidiary, Fisher Investments Europe, manages about $2 billion for 2,800 individual investors across Europe.
The firm's Investment Policy Committee is a four-member leadership team that handles strategic portfolio-management decisions. While all members participate in research, analysis and discussion to inform strategic decision making, company founder Kenneth Fisher has played an outsize role in setting strategy for more than 35 years. Fisher serves as chief executive officer and co-chief investment officer for the firm. He is a self-made billionaire, the author of 11 books on investing and a long-time columnist for Forbes magazine.
The other members of the Investment Policy Committee include Jeff Silk, Bill Glaser and Aaron Anderson, who collaborate on the implementation of firm strategy, selecting securities and engineering portfolios, and directing the firm's research programs. Silk, who has been with the firm since 1983, serves as vice chairman and co-chief investment officer. He previously served as president and chief operating officer (COO) of the firm, and as director of trading and operations.
Glaser is the executive vice president of portfolio management, and is responsible for the firm's research and investment operations departments. He began as a research analyst with the firm in 1999 and joined the Investment Policy Committee in 2011. Anderson is the senior vice president of research, overseeing capital markets and global macroeconomic research for the firm. He started at Fisher Investments in 2005, and joined the Investment Policy Committee in 2011. He formerly served as assistant vice president for Deutsche Bank Alex. Brown Inc. He has written two books on investing.
Fisher Investments offers two sets of products for institutional investors and individual clients. The firm provides its institutional clients an array of strategy-based equity products categorized by geographic focus. The company's U.S. strategies focus on U.S. equities, its global ex-U.S. strategies focus on foreign investments and its global strategies have no geographic restrictions. These products all utilize a top-down stock-selecting approach, which begins with an analysis of worldwide trends in economics, politics and market sentiment to set country-, sector- and theme-specific weights, as well as to provide an initial filter for prospect stocks. A multistage screening process is then implemented to derive a list of prospect stocks, which is further scrutinized and narrowed by fundamental analysis and risk evaluation.
On the retail services side of the business, Fisher Investments offers comprehensive portfolio management and financial planning services to individuals with at least $500,000 to invest. The firm constructs a customized portfolio based on a detailed analysis of client finances, investment goals and time horizon. Portfolios may include a mix of stocks, bonds and other securities, although portfolio strategy is highly dependent on individual client needs. All clients are assigned a personal investment counselor who communicates strategy, provides performance updates and educates clients on topics relevant to their portfolios. The company also holds regular client-only seminars across the country, during which Fisher Investments analysts explain current market conditions, update clients on emerging trends and take questions.