More than 5 Million Preferred Rewards Enrollees Are Eligible; Program
Expansion Is Part of $500 Million Investment in Banking and Investing
Capabilities That Help Clients Achieve Their Life Goals
CHARLOTTE, N.C.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jan. 30, 2019--
Bank of America today announced that it will expand eligibility for
commission-free online stock and ETF tradesthrough Merrill Edge.
This benefit has been available for clients enrolled in the higher tiers
of the Preferred Rewards program for the past four years and will extend
to all enrolled clients, regardless of tier, starting in the second
quarter of this year.
Launched in 2014, Preferred Rewards is a first-of-its-kind,
comprehensive loyalty program based on a client’s full relationship
across Bank of America banking and/or Merrill Edge and Merrill Lynch
investment accounts. More than 5.25 million clients are currently
enrolled in Preferred Rewards, with combined client banking and
investment assets over $425 billion. Brokerage affiliates of Bank of
America have been offering commission-free trades since 2006, even prior
to the launch of Merrill Edge in 2010.
This is just one of several advancements Bank of America has made to
their range of banking and investing capabilities available for mass
affluent investors. The bank has invested $250 million over the last
four years and plans to spend another $250 million over the next four
years toward new capabilities that will give clients the power to match
their life priorities to goals, receive a personalized plan, and pursue
advice, guidance, research, and tools at their convenience and
discretion – whether in person, on the phone, online, or through their
“No one can match our combination of digital capabilities, reach, scale,
and our full continuum of investment services to empower our clients to
reach their goals and live their best financial lives,” said Aron
Levine, head of Consumer Banking and Merrill Edge. “We give clients the
choice to engage with us when, where, and how they want. Our aim is to
be their trusted advisor throughout a lifetime of changes and triumphs,
and we are just getting started.”
The news follows the recent announcement that Merrill Edge received the 2018
International Service Excellence Award in the Visionary category.
Bank of America is also investing in training the client professionals
who will deliver these capabilities to clients. Its leadership training
and development organization, The Academy, represents a significant
investment in Merrill Edge’s client professionals across the firm, and
has standardized best practices in advisor training and career pathing
to empower a diverse pool of client-centric talent. Aspiring advisors
receive in-role development to both empathize with client needs across
all life stages and navigate the full continuum of wealth management
These investments follow a busy year for enhancements, awards, and
On January 3, Merrill Edge announced the launch
of Fund Story, a new research experience for Merrill Edge
self-directed clients designed to help them more easily evaluate mutual
funds and ETFs, including the fund’s top holdings, costs and ratings.
The new experience complements Stock Story, an award-winning stock
research experience offering jargon-free stock analysis and insights;
and Portfolio Story, a portfolio analysis and performance review tool
launched last year.
Other Merrill Edge highlights from the year include:
Enabled moving across our banking and investing apps without needing
Continued the momentum of our Merrill
Edge Guided Investing platform.
Were awarded Barron’s 2018 Best Online Broker for “In-Person Service,”
“Long-Term Investing,” and “Investor Education.”
Eclipsed $186 billion in Merrill Edge investment assets, up over
three-fold since 2010 and the fastest-growing among peers.
Surpassed 2.6 million client investment accounts by deepening
relationships across our 66 million clients.
“At Bank of America and Merrill Edge, we believe that client care begins
by understanding the client and their needs and goals,” said Levine. “We
have not only an opportunity, but a duty to make investments of this
magnitude in our platform to benefit the financial lives of our clients.
And we are uniquely positioned to make them without hesitation, aligned
with the needs of our clients and unencumbered by the trappings of
Merrill Edge is a streamlined investment service that
provides access to the investment insights of Merrill Lynch and the
convenience of Bank of America banking. With Merrill Edge, clients can
view their Merrill Edge investment and Bank of America bank accounts on
one page online. They also have access to easy-to-use tools, actionable
insights, step-by-step guidance and competitive pricing for online
Bank of America
Bank of America is one of the world’s leading
financial institutions, serving individual consumers, small and
middle-market businesses and large corporations with a full range of
banking, investing, asset management and other financial and risk
management products and services. The company provides unmatched
convenience in the United States, serving approximately 66 million
consumer and small business clients with approximately 4,300 retail
financial centers, including approximately 1,800 lending centers, 2,200
Merrill Edge investment centers and 1,500 business centers;
approximately 16,300 ATMs; and award-winning digital banking with more
than 36 million active users, including over 26 million mobile users.
Bank of America is a global leader in wealth management, corporate and
investment banking and trading across a broad range of asset classes,
serving corporations, governments, institutions and individuals around
the world. Bank of America offers industry-leading support to
approximately 3 million small business owners through a suite of
innovative, easy-to-use online products and services. The company serves
clients through operations across the United States, its territories and
more than 35 countries. Bank of America Corporation stock (NYSE: BAC) is
listed on the New York Stock Exchange.
For more Bank of America news, including dividend announcements and
other important information, visit the Bank
of America newsroom. Click here to
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Merrill Edge was named the winner in the Visionary category by the
Customer Service Institute of America in 2018. The judging criteria is
based on the balanced scorecard methodology, review of the organizations
to determine if the customer is the focus of the business and how that
is supported through culture, processes, procedures, training, hiring
practices, and daily actions. Rankings and recognition from the Customer
Service Institute of America are no guarantee of future investment
success and do not ensure that a current or prospective client will
experience a higher level of performance results and such rankings
should not be construed as an endorsement. Merrill Edge pays a fee to
participate in the judging process.
Neither Merrill Lynch nor any of its affiliates or financial advisors
provides legal, tax or accounting advice. You should consult your legal
and/or tax advisors before making any financial decisions.
Banking products are provided by Bank of America, N.A., and affiliated
banks, Members FDIC and wholly owned subsidiaries of Bank of America
Merrill Edge® is available through Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith
Incorporated (MLPF&S), and consists of the Merrill Edge Advisory Center
(investment guidance) and self-directed online investing.
MLPF&S is a registered broker-dealer, Member SIPC and wholly owned
subsidiary of Bank of America Corporation.
Are Not FDIC Insured
Are Not Bank Guaranteed
May Lose Value
© 2019 Bank of America Corporation. All rights reserved.
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Source: Bank of America
Reporters May Contact:
Susan Atran, Bank of America, 1.646.743.0791