History & Timeline

Our approach is backed by the history, expertise and resources to help you succeed


Waddell & Reed has been serving the financial needs of families, individuals and businesses for more than 80 years.

Founded by two World War I veterans, Chauncey Waddell and Cameron Reed, in 1937, we’ve been dedicated ever since to helping people achieve their financial goals so they can get where they want to go in life.

As one of the oldest planning firms in the United States, we provide financial planning, retirement planning, education funding and much more through our network of more than 1,800 skilled financial advisors.

Helping people build plans for all market cycles

Since our founding, the world has seen a lot of change. Waddell & Reed has continued to grow and evolve. In 1998, our parent firm went public with an initial public offering of Class A common stock (NYSE: WDR). Across all the years, our commitment to help people build personal financial plans has not changed. 

Over the 80 years of our history, despite volatility and change, the stock market (represented in this chart by the S&P 500 Index) has moved steadily upward.

Market Histoy

Source: Morningstar. The S&P 500 Index is an unmanaged index of 500 widely held stocks that is generally considered representative of the U.S. stock market. Investments cannot be made directly in an index. Past performance is not a guarantee of future results.

Our mission today is based on our founders’ philosophy that those who participate consistently in the equity markets through a personalized financial plan can work toward life goals and weather a variety of market changes.

Our advisors work in communities around the country

Today, Waddell & Reed, Inc., has nearly 400 offices in communities around the United States. Advisors help businesses, families and individuals plan for their future, regardless or background or level of wealth, one step at a time.

Office Locations

We take your journey seriously and we'll be there every step of the way.

Your journey, goals and plan are our commitment.

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Global economic growth likely to improve in 2017

October 20, 2016 - Derek Hamilton, Global Economist

We believe global economic growth will improve in 2017 and may reach levels not seen since 2012-14.

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Become an Advisor

Pursue a career as a financial advisor

Since 1937, Waddell & Reed has built an advisor-focused, client-centered culture and has been unceasingly dedicated to creating an environment where you can achieve success.

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Market Data powered by Wikinvest. Data is provided as-is, delayed, and subject to Terms