Morningstar to acquire automated portfolio rebalancing firm Total Rebalance Expert

Software used by more than 500 advisers will be integrated with Chicago firm's other functions, broadening appeal

Oct 8, 2015 @ 5:18 pm

By Alessandra Malito

Independent investment research firm Morningstar said it would acquire Total Rebalance Expert, an automated portfolio rebalancing platform created by financial adviser Sheryl Rowling.

Ms. Rowling said that through the acquisition, her software, which she created in 2008, will be able to integrate with Morningstar investment research. It is used by more than 500 advisers to rebalance more than $20 billion in client assets, as well as harvest losses and rebalance at an account or household level. It will be integrated into the Morningstar platform but also remain a standalone product.

(More: Financial data wars heat up as Envestnet sets lofty goals for Yodlee)

Terms of the deal were not disclosed but the transaction is expected to be completed in November.

"I'm looking at this as something that can benefit advisers," she said.

The two have worked with each other in the past. In June, Morningstar integrated the platform with Morningstar OfficeSM, the firm's practice and portfolio management system that 4,000 advisers use. With this acquisition, tRx will be able to push out enhancements quicker, and take further advantage of the research firm's data, Ms. Rowling said in an interview.

(More: Morningstar buys data aggregator ByAllAccounts for $28 million)

Tricia Rothschild, head of global adviser solutions at Morningstar, said in a news release that the future for tRx includes implementing metrics such as investment valuation, risk factors and real-time pricing.

Ms. Rowling will continue to oversee the direction of the platform, but on a part time basis. She will continue working at her advisory firm and said that not having to run the administration of tRx “probably means I'll have a little more time to focus on my advisory business.”

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