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Top Cities for Financial Adviser Startups

As financial services companies trim payrolls, more industry veterans are opening their own investment firms.

According to AdviceIQ/Meridian-IQ,which tracks the financial adviser industry, there are now 28,574 resident investment adviser (RIA) firms, usually with offices of two to eight employees and an average of $25 million to $50 million in client assets under management (AUM). Others, such as spinoffs from the financial giants, can manage mutual funds and other big accounts, boosting the assets under management.

In the most recent full year of data, 2011, 1,108 RIA firms were formed with $561.38 billion worth of assets under management.

We thought it would be interesting to see which cities had the most activity in creating new RIA firms in 2011 and how much money (measured in assets) was under management. (Note that there is a wide range in the size of AUM, depending on the individual starting the firm and the number and size of clients.)

Here are the top 10 cities based on a customized search of AdviceIQ/Meridian-IQ data bases.

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