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Active managers stumble in March after hot start to 2019

April 3, 2019

For active managers who spent the year's first two months rediscovering their super powers, March was kryptonite. Stock-picking mutual funds have watched it all turn tragic over the last four weeks, with two-thirds trailing benchmarks, upending...

UBS considers sale, acquisition and other options for its asset management business

April 3, 2019

UBS Group AG is evaluating options for its asset management unit, including a partial sale or merger of the business, according to people with knowledge of the matter. The Swiss bank has considered seeking to acquire Deutsche Bank AG's asset...

Is volatility coming?

April 2, 2019

Volatility, like the long-term winter in Game of Thrones, is coming. It won't be as bad as the Long Night that covered Westeros with a terrible darkness for generations. However, the current market rally likely will be upended by episodic, Red...

Demand for growth stocks produces record inflows for ETF

April 1, 2019

The best quarter for U.S. stocks in a decade has come to a close, but signs are emerging that the appetite for risk may have room to grow. It's apparent in the rush of investors trying to get access to growth stocks, a strategy that was pummeled...

The hedger's opportunity

April 1, 2019

Now that the market has rebounded substantially off its lows, how do advisers know when to enter or exit the market? The short answer is that they can't know. Market timing is an ever-elusive game. Instead, advisers can look for strategies to...

Socially responsible investments reach $30.7 trillion

April 1, 2019

Global socially responsible investments grew by 34% to $30.7 trillion over the past two years, lifted by Japanese pension funds, retail investors everywhere and broad, growing concern about climate change. Europe remains the biggest region for...

Schwab wants investing to be subscription-based

March 28, 2019

It's not just Apple Inc. that's betting big on subscriptions. Charles Schwab Corp., the low-cost investing pioneer that now handles more than $3.5 trillion in assets, is switching to a subscription-based financial planning option for its digital...

Latest price-war salvo pegs fees to low-risk performance

March 28, 2019

Westwood Holdings Group, a $16.6 billion Dallas-based asset manager, is hoping to catch a ride on the price-war bandwagon with a managed-account fee model that links fees to the risk taken by the portfolio manager. To underscore the lack of...

How to handle a client with low risk tolerance

March 27, 2019

Risk tolerance questionnaires, scores and levels are a big focus right now in retirement income planning. While many of the tools are still rudimentary (e.g., your desire to skydive probably isn't tied to your investment risk tolerance), we...

Supreme Court backs SEC, rules against investment banker

March 27, 2019

The U.S. Supreme Court reinforced the Securities and Exchange Commission's powers, upholding sanctions against an investment banker found to have duped investors about a startup company's financial condition. The justices, voting 6-2, said Francis...

Vanguard poised to top BlackRock in first-quarter U.S. ETF flows

March 27, 2019

Vanguard Group Inc. is luring more money this quarter than any of its rivals in the ultra-competitive U.S. market for exchange-traded funds. The $5 trillion asset manager's U.S. ETFs have absorbed about $17 billion since year-end, meaning it's...

Bots are forging the next generation of index funds

March 26, 2019

Kensho Technologies was focused on analyzing North Korean missile launches, earthquakes and elections when John van Moyland joined in 2014. The Central Intelligence Agency was among its early backers. Now its focus has shifted to finance. S&P...

Beware misreading inverted yield curve

March 25, 2019

At the end of last week, the three-month Treasury bills' yield rose above the yield for 10-year Treasuries for the first time since 2007, prompting warnings that the U.S. is headed for recession later this year or in early 2020. That's because,...

Don't write off ESG investments out of habit — the demand is real

March 23, 2019

Opportunities in the financial services industry rarely look as inviting as the current market for investments focused on environmental, social and corporate governance factors. At around $12 trillion, which is up 38% from two years ago, ESG...

BlackRock invests in pot stock

March 22, 2019

BlackRock Inc. funds are wading into the fast-growing cannabis industry as institutional investors grapple with betting on weed. Five actively managed BlackRock funds have become the largest institutional investor in Curaleaf Holdings Inc.,...

Big data: seeing investments in an entirely new way

March 22, 2019

Across American society, big data is shining a brilliant light on previously obscure relationships. Marketers use people's web searches and purchase histories to offer up their most irresistible offers. Political campaigns transform ages, education...

401(k) managed accounts becoming more diverse

March 21, 2019

Some record keepers of defined-contribution retirement plans are diversifying the managed-account products they offer to employers and their employees in a bid to boost uptake and diversify their revenue streams in an environment of fee compression,...

Staying active in a year of volatility

March 21, 2019

Two months ago, we made two broad predictions about the credit markets. The first was that 2019 would be characterized by volatility, with 2018-like ups and downs, albeit with much greater uncertainty and potential for more severe outcomes....

Brian Block continues his legal fight to stay out of prison

March 21, 2019

Convicted of securities fraud almost two years ago, Brian Block's fight to stay out of prison turned the page this week as he lost his bid for a new trial in federal court, but appealed to a higher venue for another attempt to prove his innocence....

As cash-back ETF hits funds market, signs of trouble appear

March 20, 2019

There's a whiff of desperation among asset managers in their seemingly never-ending war on fund fees. Last week, one ETF upstart created a minor splash by doing what was once unthinkable — offering to pay investors to buy into its exchange-traded...

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