A Registered Investment Advisor (RIA) is an Investment Advisor registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission or a state’s securities agency. The term was popularized by the numerous references to RIAs within the Investment Advisors Act of 1940. An investment advisor is an individual or firm in the business of giving advice about investing in securities and who receives compensation for doing so. Securities include stocks, bonds and mutual funds. Investment advisors also manage portfolios of securities. RIAs generally are paid via a percentage of the value of the assets they manage for clients, an hourly fee, fixed fee or a commission on the securities they sell — if the adviser is also a broker-dealer.