MiB: Penny Pennington, Edward Jones

This week, we speak with Penny Pennington, who is the managing partner (CEO) of Edward Jones, a Fortune 500 financial services firm. The firm has 19,000 financial advisors with $1.3 trillion in assets under management. She began her Edward Jones career in 2000 as a financial adviser. Penny is also senior executive sponsor of the firm’s LGBT+ & Allies Business Resource Group, and was recently named No. 33 on the Fortune Most Powerful Women in Business list.

Pennington explains why all 15,000 local offices of Edward Jones were open during the pandemic lock down. I was surprised to learn that all 15,000 offices were staffed and open, with the lights on during the entire crisis. While they were not open to the public, Pennington notes it was important for their clients to see that they were still continuing to operate on their behalf. She explains that local offices are large enough for 2 or 3 employees to practice safe social distancing during the Covid outbreak.

We discuss how interested clients have been in the election — not so much from a partisan perspective but from the view of what it might mean to investors’ portfolios, taxes, financial regulation and the fiduciary rule.

Pennington explains what her firm is doing to promote more gender and racial diversity to Edward Jones. She believes increasing diversity will be the future of the financial services industry.

A list of her favorite books are here; A transcript of our conversation is available here.

You can stream and download our full conversation, including the podcast extras on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher, Google, Bloomberg, and Acast. All of our earlier podcasts on your favorite pod hosts can be found here.

Be sure to check out our Masters in Business next week with Dennis Lynch, Head of Counterpoint Global at Morgan Stanley Investment Management, running $44 billion. Several of the funds Lynch runs are up close to 100% YTD in 2020.




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