Financial Advisors at Plante Moran Celebrate 35 Years Serving Clients
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Financial Advisors at Plante Moran Celebrate 35 Years Serving Clients

Southfield, MICH — Plante Moran Financial Advisors (PMFA), an affiliate entity of the public accounting and business advisory firm Plante Moran, is having a birthday. A 35th birthday!

“We are pleased to have reached this milestone,” said John Lesser, partner and president of PMFA. “ We are grateful that so many of our clients have been with us for many years. It is an honor that they trust us with their personal balance sheets, their investments and with helping them achieve their long-term financial goals.”

PMFA was the brainchild of Rick Dirksen, now a retired partner, who wanted to use his talents, his education and the resources of his firm to help clients in the area of personal financial planning. Dirksen convinced the firm that its clients could benefit from a practice that focused on offering broad personal financial planning advice that was coordinated with the firm’s existing advisory skills in personal tax matters.

“Back then, the top income tax rate was 70 percent,” said Dirksen. “At the time, financial planning was more about income tax reduction strategies and tax shelters and less about investment strategies and achieving personal financial goals.”

“Because estate taxes were also high, clients were also interested in how to reduce them,” said Dirksen. “Financial planning then was more about ‘how can I reduce my income tax bill and how can I efficiently transfer money to my kids,’” he added. “We felt they needed that advice but  more than just that.”

With the introduction of the Tax Reform Act in 1986, the top tax rate in the U.S. went from 70 percent to 28 percent. Effective estate tax rates also started coming down. Many tax shelter programs become less popular; PMFA continued to broaden its scope of personal financial planning with a particular emphasis on comprehensive investment consulting and wealth management. Clients were appreciative and more clients came.

Now ranked as the seventh largest independent registered investment advisor in the country according to Financial Advisor magazine and now a practice with 14 partners and 117 staff, the PMFA team is indeed having a happy 35th birthday.

About Plante Moran Financial Advisors
With $7 billion in assets under management, Plante Moran Financial Advisors is one of the nation’s largest independent registered investment advisors. Plante Moran Financial Advisors serves as a trusted advisor to high net worth individuals, family business owners, not-for-profit organizations and corporate retirement plans helping them build, manage, and preserve their wealth. Its integrated affiliate services include investment consulting, financial planning, trust, insurance consulting, estate planning, business succession, and tax planning. Plante Moran Financial Advisors is an affiliated entity to Plante Moran, the nation’s 11th largest certified public accounting and business advisory firm, providing clients with financial, human capital, operations, strategy, technology, and wealth management services. For more information, visit

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