Bank holding companies saw a dip in wealth management income in the first three quarters of 2012, a new study says.

They earned $89.74 billion in wealth management income through the first nine months of 2012, down 2.7% from the same period in 2011, according to a study released Wednesday by consulting firms Michael White Associates and Investment Professionals. The report was based on data from over 7,100 banks and thrifts and their holding companies.

Income from investment advisory services dropped sharply in the first nine months of 2012, but a rise in brokerage and trust income made up much of the difference. Investment advisory and banking fees fell 12%, to $32.62 billion, but securities brokerage fees and commissions rose 20%, to $33.34 billion, and income from fiduciary activities rose 1%, to $25.53 billion.

"As an industry, investment advisory and banking activities decreased in the first nine months of 2012 compared to 2011, thereby taking overall wealth management revenues down. However, the other components of wealth management showed positive growth," said Investment Professionals President Jay McAnelly in the news release.

Among large banks, Morgan Stanley (MS) earned the most from its wealth management operations, followed by JPMorgan Chase (JPM). Among companies with between $1 billion and $10 billion of total assets, Stifel Financial in Missouri earned the most, followed by Wedbush Bank in California. First Command Financial Services in Texas led companies with between $500 million and $1 billion of assets, and the Haverford Trust in Pennsylvania led the small banks.

Among the biggest banks, investment advisory income represented a larger proportion of total wealth management income, while smaller banks relied more heavily on fiduciary services and securities brokerage commissions and fees, the study said.

Based in San Antonio, Investment Professionals helps community banks develop investment programs. Michael White Associates is a consulting and research firm based in Radnor, Pa.

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