After a six-month delay in launching its web-based version of iRebal, TD Ameritrade Institutional has finally gone into production on the re-balancing tool with about 20 financial advisers who are using the software on the firm's Veo technology platform.
As of May, the 4,500 investment advisers who use the custody services of TD Ameritrade Institutional and the Veo platform for trading will have access to the web-based version of iRebal, which they can use at no additional charge, according to Ben Welch, the firm's director of adviser business development.
Core functions of the web-based application, which includes daily smartphone alerts when balances have drifted outside an acceptable range, will be the same as the desktop version.
The primary difference is the look and feel of the web-based app, versus the stand-alone desktop version that advisers can use with the custodian of their choice, said Mr. Welch, who oversees TD Ameritrade Institutional's iRebal software business.
The iRebal desktop version costs advisers $10,000 to $50,000 a year in licensing fees.
“Because iRebal is a key program, we wound up taking a really disciplined approach,” Mr. Welch said to explain the six-month delay. “When we roll out broadly to customers in May, it will be with a host of training options.”
Re-balancing portfolios has long been a challenge for advisers, and 50% of them continue to use time-consuming manual processes for the task, Mr. Welch said, noting that advisers don't re-balance as often as they would like.
The daily smartphone alerts let advisers know about issues such as portfolios with pending re-balance results and scheduled re-balances about to expire, said Danielle Fava, senior product manager for iRebal.
“This overnight re-balancing is one of the key benefits of this version of iRebal,” she said.