Unlocking Organic Growth Opportunities: Held-Away Cash

Written by: Frank Bonanno

Registered Investment Advisors (RIAs) have historically been focused on achieving organic growth through various means. However, recent trends suggest that organic growth has slowed down over the past year, falling below 4%, a significant decrease from the previous year’s rate of over 8%. The 2023 Fidelity RIA Benchmarking Study highlights this shift in the industry landscape. To supplement organic growth goals, we explore a strategy employed by RIAs to augment their growth prospects by helping clients to seamlessly increase yields on their cash while eliminating principal and credit risk.

In this brief, we also emphasize how providing FDIC insurance to previously uninsured cash, and in many cases increasing the rate of return for clients, is a valuable client service and one that can help to fully secure the relationship. We draw a comparison between just a $1,000,000 balance (average FICA balance is a multiple of that) in a traditional savings account and FICA, showcasing the tangible benefits of this approach. Furthermore, we underline how this tactic allows RIAs the opportunity to bring these funds under their purview, enabling them to organically grow assets under management and support longer-term wealth planning.

The Value of FICA For Advisors

1. Unlocking the Growth Potential of Uninsured Cash

A critical component of the FICA solution is providing FDIC insurance to previously uninsured client funds. Many clients may not be fully aware of the limitations of traditional savings accounts, where deposits are only insured up to $250,000 per account. By offering up to $100 million in FDIC insurance, RIAs can safeguard clients’ cash, eliminating concerns about uninsured balances. This peace of mind can be a significant value add for clients, particularly when experiencing liquidity events, like a large inheritance, or the sale of a business or home. Capturing that cash before it anchors at a bank is an invaluable tool utilized by many RIAs to keep that cash under their control/purview.

2. Maximizing Returns for Clients

The national average savings account rate, as per the FDIC, is a mere 0.46% APY. To highlight the tangible benefits, let’s compare a $1,000,000 balance in a traditional savings account to FICA For Advisors:

3. Bringing Assets Under Management

By encouraging clients to simply link their existing held-away deposits with FICA, RIAs can expand their assets under management—potentially significantly. As an example, consider the average FICA account size is in the seven figures. If an advisor had only ten (10) FICA clients, that equates to a potential $20-$30 million in new money within his/her purview. The ability to responsibly navigate even 10% of this cash into longer-term wealth plans translates to earning a raise in fee income while organically growing your book. This strategy can also allow RIAs to have a more comprehensive view of a client’s financial situation and enables you the opportunity to offer holistic wealth management services to best support long-term wealth plans.

4. Client Value: Eliminate the Need to Maintain Multiple Bank Accounts

Many HNW individuals maintain multiple bank accounts to achieve higher levels of FDIC insurance beyond the $250,000 threshold. That means multiple monthly statements, 1099s, active solicitation from the bank’s wealth management arm, and time involved researching for higher rates and moving cash around. FICA solves for this through one deposit account that can protect up to $100 million in FDIC insurance coverage, has only one monthly statement and one 1099—all linked directly to your client’s bank or brokerage account.

5. Deepen Existing Relationships

Many HNW clients served by advisors are also business owners, are board members on companies or non-profits or endowments, or have organizations or charities that are meaningful to them in some way. Each of these types of organizations have operating cash, which in many cases by investment policy or bylaw, must be FDIC insured. Your existing clients, already champions of the causes/organizations they represent, can introduce FICA to those same organizations to help maximize their earnings potential while providing the high levels of FDIC insurance many of them require.

6. Doing Good with Deposits

There are more than 1,000 financial institutions (banks and credit unions) throughout all 50 states in the FICA network. This means that client deposits go toward supporting local communities and economies, and can help bolster neighborhood growth and development in your state and others. No one bank, treasury bill, or money market mutual fund can accomplish this.


In an environment where organic growth for RIAs has slowed, attracting held-away cash with FICA presents an exciting opportunity. This high-yield deposit account offers:

  • A competitive 5.00% APY
  • Up to $100 million in FDIC insurance
  • Overnight liquidity

Providing FDIC insurance to previously uninsured cash is a value-add service for clients, and the higher interest rates make this strategy financially beneficial to a wide range of your clients. Summarily, when you secure the cash, you secure the relationship. FICA helps enable you to bring assets under management, support longer-term wealth plans, and reinvigorate your organic growth prospects in an evolving financial landscape.

Related: The Cash Resurgence: Advisors’ Secret Weapon With Frank Bonanno

1 APY is effective as of November 1, 2023 and is earned on the first $1 million. Accounts with deposits between $1 million and $100 million will earn a blended rate. Please contact your financial advisor to determine blended rate. Current yield and maximum deposit insurance coverage is indicative for FICA and may be lower or higher than what is stated due to changes in market or business conditions. Please contact StoneCastle for the most current yield and maximum deposit insurance coverage as they may have changed since the date of this fact sheet. FICA yield is the APY (annual percentage yield) based on APR (annual percentage rate) for the period indicated as reported by StoneCastle. The Annual Percentage Yield (APY) paid by program banks is subject to change at any time at the program banks’ discretion.

2 Balances held in client Custody Accounts may not receive FDIC and NCUA insurance. If your clients have any cash at any depository institution that is in the bank network then your clients may not receive full FDIC or NCUA insurance coverage on deposits at those institutions.

3 Liquidity is ordinarily available on a next business day basis. Same day purchase credit and next day liquidity redemptions are subject to a 3:00 PM ET cut-off. Please carefully read the current FICA Program Terms and Conditions for more complete information and the governing terms of the account (including liquidity, fees, terms, etc.). This can be found at stonecastle.advisor.cash.