1. What does Summit Strategies Group do?
  2. What differentiates Summit from other investment consulting firms?
  3. Does Summit adhere to a code of ethics?
  4. What is the role of a Summit consultant?
  5. What is the role of Modeling?
  6. What is the role of Manager Research?
  7. What is the role of Performance Measurement?
  8. Does Summit offer Alternative Asset Class consulting?
  9. What types of client reporting does Summit provide?
  10. Does Summit produce any proprietary research?
  11. What online services are offered?

Summit was formed in 1995 with the goal of establishing a new standard of proactive, results driven consulting services for a select group of clients. Our nationwide client base includes corporate, public, and Taft-Hartley defined benefit and defined contribution plans; hospitals and healthcare groups; foundations and endowments; and insurance reserves. Comprehensive services are provided, including all phases of Design, Implementation, and Monitoring. Summit builds partnerships with its clients, based on trust, fiduciary responsibility, industry knowledge, and a willingness to state and support our recommendations.

Here are just a few of the many qualities that differentiate Summit from others in the industry:

Thoughtful Leadership – All solutions are customized for our clients.There are no "cookie-cutter" programs.

Full Access – No consultant "funnels." You have complete access to your entire team.

Experienced Professionals – Diverse backgrounds and experience provide unique perspective.

Serve Small Number of Clients – Personalized service is key to a successful partnership.

Collaborative Culture – Our firm stucture puts ideas and teamwork at the forefront with input from across the organization.

Yes, all Summit professionals are required to comply with the Investment Management Consultants Association (IMCA) Code of Professional Responsibility and the Chartered Financial Analyst Institute (CFA) Code of Ethics.

Summit consultants are directly responsible for all aspects of client support. The firm’s consultants partner with a maximum of 10 clients each, leveraging years of experience to develop a deep understanding of the plan and its objectives. The firm’s consultants coordinate a team of individuals from Summit’s Modeling and Manager Research groups, Performance Measurement, and Administration, to design, implement, and monitor a customized investment strategy.

The modeling group evaluates the impact of asset performance in a broader context as part of the asset allocation process. Through the use of modeling, we follow the evolution of various parameters that are of importance to the sponsoring entity. The models may include only the expected case, defined specific economic scenarios, and/or utilize Monte Carlo simulation.

Summit’s Manager Research staff is responsible for maintaining both a qualitative and quantitative database of all client managers, and other managers Summit believes offer the greatest potential for adding value, called our Top Tier List. Through regular face-to-face meetings and ongoing evaluation, Summit’s analysts gain an intimate knowledge of each firm and are often able to proactively uncover performance or other firm issues that could negatively impact our clients' portfolios. Summit’s independence allows us to consider investment options and alternatives in an environment where the client’s best interests are our sole focus.

Summit’s Performance Measurement analysts reconcile and maintain our clients’ performance returns. Monthly performance is calculated and reconciled by analyzing detailed custodian statements; Summit is online with most custodian banks. This detailed verification process enables us to provide clients with accurate, consistent information to evaluate manager performance, and the value added through policy and other strategic decisions. Summit utilizes the PARis performance system, offered by Investment Metrics LLC, which provides access to the BNY/Mellon universe for comparison to many style, fund, and other peer samples.

Yes – Summit has extensive experience in alternative investing, and we have a large team of professionals focused solely on alternatives research. Our clients currently have $25 billion dollars invested across real assets, private equity, and hedge funds, using both fund of funds and direct investment approaches.

Summit’s reporting package is delivered in the following formats:

Daily Performance:

Clients with a custodial relationship at a supported financial institution also have access to their portfolio’s daily performance on our website via a secure login. Summit receives a daily feed of unaudited transactions and holdings from the custodian. From this data we calculate month and year-to-date returns on the entire plan structure, including asset class composites and individual investment managers.

Monthly Reports:

Designed as a preliminary report to inform staff and Board/Committee members of early results.

Available as early as five business days following month-end, depending on receipt of custodian data.

Report includes asset allocation, manager allocation, total plan return, manager returns versus benchmarks, and may be calculated either gross or net of management fees.

Quarterly Performance Reviews:

Available as early as four to five weeks following quarter end, this color report is designed to meet each client’s performance reporting needs.

Contains all relevant information for review and action by staff and Board/Committee members.

Executive Summary includes economic and capital markets review, qualitative and quantitative analysis of the fund as whole, asset class composites, and individual managers compared to both benchmarks and peers.

Includes all appropriate comparisons and attribution available through the PARis platform using all available/applicable databases.

Enhanced Alternatives Reports:

For clients in our alternative asset programs, Summit's Enhanced Alternatives Reports consist of investment specific metrics utilizing manager provided data (which is typically not available at the time of the custodial audit).

Yes, Summit regularly produces topical reports as well as weekly, monthly, and quarterly capital market analysis and commentary. In the Research Publications section of our site, you can read Summit’s latest thoughts on a variety of plan and investment related issues. Our Market Commentary section features our monthly and quarterly market analysis and commentary.

Investment Manager Research

Via a secure login, clients are able to review current Top Tier manager lists, and drill down to individual managers, where quantitative and qualitative information is available, along with recent meeting notes and other commentary.

Daily Performance Updates

Via a secure login, clients can get the most current performance information available on their own portfolios, including market values and unaudited month-to-date performance through close of business on the previous day. Monthly and quarterly performance reports are also posted and available for viewing and/or download.

Investment Research

All capital markets research and other regular publications are posted on Summit’s website for client access. White papers and other ad hoc research are also available online to clients, so that research conducted on behalf of a specific client may be shared with others.