The Robo Advisors Channel

New Threats to the AUM-Fee Model

My article last month on developments that imperil the AUM-fee model generated a spirited response on APViewpoint. A recent report from Accenture Consulting and an interview I did with a compliance professional illustrate why this subject is more controversial than I originally thought.

Will Q4 Earnings Confirm Recent Economic Strength?

My scorecard for earnings season will look for the following company characteristics: Confidence. I expect most to have a murky outlook, with no reason to set the future bar very high. Important trade relationships – imports or exports. Comments on these fears may create some buying opportunities. Concern about a stronger dollar. Everyone is teed up to watch for this, and we should as well.

The Key Business Trends in the Advisory Business

There are several irrefutable facts that should be informing the strategies for leaders in financial services.

2017 US Growth Investing Outlook

With the US stock market roaring ahead to close 2016 on a high note, the question for many investors is whether the momentum can be sustained.

New Developments Imperil Your AUM Fee Model

Some recent publications from SEI, Fidelity and Schwab highlight the urgency with which advisors must confront the fiduciary aspects of the fee model they use.

The Fate Awaiting Advisors Who Assume Too Much

As an advisor you counsel your clients to be aware of confirmation bias and to avoid the temptation to favor information that confirms pre-existing beliefs. Yet, many of you suffer from the same bias.

Top Experts Predict the Future of the DOL Rule

A mere 80 days separates President-elect Trump’s inauguration from the April 10, 2017 effective date for the Department of Labor’s (DOL’s) fiduciary standard rule. Yesterday, four industry experts gave their predictions on whether the rule will survive under the Trump administration.

The Coming Fiduciary Rule: A Promising Time for Advisors?

How might the coming DOL fiduciary rule impact advisors’ practices in the days to come?

Culture, Communication, and the Next Generation of Investors

When robo-advisors and the commoditization of investment management were first introduced a few years ago, many established financial professionals believed only a small minority of investors would opt for a purely technological investing experience.

Why Are We Paying Active Managers for Beta?

For evidence, look no further than sales of bottled water in the first world. Our ancestors spent hundreds of billions of dollars developing the infrastructure to deliver potable water to every home, yet we spend billions each year to purchase bottled versions of what we can get for free almost anywhere. Boom – I just blew up the very foundation of economics.

Five Reasons Your Asset-Based Fee Model Won’t Survive

The advisory business is changing rapidly. Your fees will be a subject of continuing scrutiny. Here are five reasons why the asset-based fee model won’t survive.

John West: Why Most Capital-Market Assumptions are Unreasonable

John West is a managing director and head of client strategies for Research Affiliates. In this interview, he discusses what assumptions advisors should use for capital-market returns over the next decade.

Last Week’s Highlights on APViewpoint

The top conversations on APViewpoint last week were started by thought leaders Joe Tomlinson, Larry Swedroe and Dan Solin. They generated thoughtful discussion with wide ranging opinions on: how variable withdrawals improve retirement outcomes; whether high-dividend strategies add value; and the future of the advisory business.

Changing an Industry through Regulation: The Department of Labor’s Conflict of Interest Rule

We all know that our government and its agencies are very good at reacting to a real or perceived crisis with new laws and regulations designed to reduce the chances of another similar event occurring. The most recent example of this concerns the cost and availability of health care.

Take the 5% Challenge! (or The “Lloyd Christmas” Lesson)

Now’s the time to get real. Now’s the time, in a world of paltry bond yields and meager dividends, to make an honest assessment of your portfolio’s long-term expected return.