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Retail brokers benefitted from the first quarter's volatility

April 20, 2018

Retail brokerages ETrade Financial Corp. and Charles Schwab Corp. welcomed the return of volatility. The jump in the VIX from single digits to an average reading of 17.4 for the first quarter may have worried their clients, but the brokers saw...

Regulatory scrutiny may put firms without adviser text messaging policies at risk

February 24, 2017

Last December, State Farm became the most recent company to settle a multimillion-dollar class action lawsuit alleging violations of the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA). This follows a massive...

7 ways for advisers to help shield clients from Equifax data hack

September 12, 2017

The Equifax security breach, made public last week, leaves 143 million consumers vulnerable to identify theft and credit fraud. But there are some ways advisers can help protect clients from the current and future threats.

How to meet robo-advisers head on

June 23, 2015

Let's face it: robo-adviser technology is here to stay. As full-service financial advisers, we will have to ramp up our communication strategies and combine them with first-class services and distinctive products to ensure that we will not only...

TIAA acquires business-to-business robo-adviser MyVest

June 30, 2016

TIAA, a financial services firm focused on the educational sector, has acquired business-to-business robo-adviser MyVest. The purchase is aimed at helping TIAA, which has $861 billion in assets under management, to reach clients who prefer to...

It takes an ecosystem to ward off cyberattacks and protect client information

June 18, 2015

In the technology industry, one metaphor that comes up repeatedly is the idea of the ecosystem — the notion that no technology firm or solution exists in a vacuum, but that they are all connected, benefiting from the experience, innovation...

Question for advisers: Why did Verizon buy dial-up dinosaur AOL?

May 15, 2015

Advisers can learn a thing or two from Verizon Inc., which last week said it would spend $4.4 billion to acquire AOL. It seems strange, given that AOL is known for its archaic dial-up system and the scratchy tone that comes with it, but Verizon...

Robo-adviser frenzy: Apocalypse or rerun?

March 16, 2015

In the independent financial advice industry, as in many other sectors, the rise of new technologies often leads to fevered discussions that the “old models” of doing business are about to become obsolete. With the rapid proliferation of...

Working remotely experiment over: Back home in San Diego

May 28, 2014

I arrived home from France the other night. It was a long day — literally — since I chased the sun all the way! Although I am very jet lagged, I’ve had time to evaluate the experiment. Was it really possible to work remotely for a month?...

Is Fidelity's plan to ditch relationship with Betterment and build its own robo too little, too late?

November 20, 2015

Fidelity Investments' plan to sever its relationship with robo-adviser Betterment Institutional in favor of building an automated investment platform on its own has some observers wondering if the mutual fund giant's strategy is too little,...

Why a big market decline won't kill the robo

September 1, 2015

After four years of remarkably calm markets, we are finally experiencing meaningful turbulence. In that period of relative calm, robo-advisers blossomed from an interesting idea into a potential threat to the status quo for advisers. One of...

Betterment funding values firm at $800 million

July 24, 2017

Online financial adviser Betterment has secured $70 million in new funding, boosting its valuation and giving it more clout to compete with rivals in an intensifying market. The new capital, raised from existing investors, values the New York-based...

Surviving change at warp speed

June 4, 2015

"The speed of disruption will be brutal. Probably 40% of global enterprises won't exist 10 years from now. Probably half the major players in high tech won't exist in a meaningful way in 10 years." — John Chambers, CEO of Cisco, on CNBC Mr....

By moving sales materials to the cloud, advisers stay nimble and compliant

May 14, 2015

Nearly every one of the roughly 300,000 financial advisers in the U.S. across all channels is out every day, making presentations and meeting with clients and prospects. The meetings involve materials, and clients expect those materials to contain...

This app really gets you around

July 30, 2014

With apologies to taxi drivers, I love Uber. How wonderful it is to be able to summon a nice car with a well-dressed driver in a matter of minutes at a cost not much higher than a taxi. For those of you who use Uber, you already know the ropes....

Use surveys to build stronger client relationships

June 16, 2014

According to a recent Dimensional Fund Advisors study, advisers who conduct a client survey lost 15% fewer clients and received 20% more referrals (than those who haven't). Would you believe that I read this piece of information just after I...

Most estate plans aren't dealing with digital assets properly

May 11, 2017

Estate planning is an unpopular topic because it often deals with the harsh realities of loss and death. Far too many people do not have an updated estate plan that meets their current needs, goals or desires. However, having a written estate...

FTJ FundChoice introduces a robo alternative

June 21, 2017

In a move to help advisers compete with robo-platforms, FTJ FundChoice, a turnkey asset management program, has launched a digital advice service that allows clients to work online with adviser-selected investment options. The service, called...

What financial advisers need to consider before a website redesign

May 30, 2017

There's more than just numbers involved when clients are considering financial planning. Your website can establish your firm as a reliable, trusted source that reinforces your relationship with core clients and introduces you to prospective...

Merrill Lynch debuts robo-platform for clients with at least $5,000 to invest

February 8, 2017

Another potential giant in the digital advice space launched on Wednesday with Merrill Lynch's robo-platform opening up for clients who have at least $5,000 to invest with the Bank of America unit. Merrill Edge Guided Investing offers digital...

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