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Michael Breen

Private Wealth Advisors




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About us

The Breen Group

The Breen Group is a wealth management team based in Palo Alto, California. We work exclusively with a select group of affluent clients who are looking for a higher echelon of services and strategies. As members of the Private Banking and Investment Group at Merrill Lynch, we combine the global resources and proven access of a leading financial institution with the intimate and customized approach of a boutique. We take a seasoned perspective on wealth management, looking to embed a client’s long-term vision, goals, and objectives within a lasting framework that is rigorous yet adaptable. Clients are drawn to us for our experience. We have worked with a number of technology entrepreneurs and corporate executives, assisting with pre-and-post IPO strategies, liquidity events, concentrated and restricted stock positions, and wealth transfer strategies. We understand the importance of doing things the right way the first time.

Our Investment Approach

The institutional vigor and open architecture of Merrill Lynch enable us to pursue investment opportunities, wherever they are housed. We recognize that wealth preservation, growth, and volatility are all key client concerns. Given varying needs, we assess client timelines, cash flow requirements, risk thresholds, and investment preferences so that we can create customized portfolios that reflect the individuality of each client. We balance liquidity concerns and tax considerations1 with return potential, broadening our viewpoint beyond gross returns. In both bull and bear markets, we recognize value in diversification, and explore a range of asset classes, including cash, fixed income, equities, and alternatives2. Most important, we are active students of the market. We are constantly evaluating new opportunities and assessing changing market conditions so that we can better address client needs through the capital markets.

Our Emphasis on the Family and Community

Clients come to us at complex moments in their financial lives. We recognize that what inspires their decisions is not simply their own welfare, but the welfare of their families and communities. We work with clients to pursue the beneficial outcomes of wealth – many of which are intangible. We encourage clients to take a multi-generational approach to their wealth strategy so that a family is unified in its deliberate pursuit of shared values. As active proponents of client education, we offer financial education programs and family boot camps to engender sound communication and informed decision making. We are passionate in our commitment to care for the whole client.

Our Offerings

We offer the strategies and services that affluent clients need and expect:

  • Investment management
  • Concentrated and restricted stock strategies
  • Pre-and-post IPO strategies
  • Retirement strategies
  • Wealth transfer strategies
  • Tax-minimization strategies
  • Philanthropy
  • Trust creation
  • Lifestyle services


  • Meet the team

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    Meet the team

    Michael J. Breen

    Senior Vice President

    Private Wealth Advisor



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