The Robo Advisors Channel

Shundrawn Thomas on the State of the ETF Industry

Shundrawn Thomas serves as Northern Trust’s executive vice president, head of funds and managed accounts group. I spoke to him about his annual president’s perspective on the ETF industry, which was just released.

The Downside of Excessive Caution

As advisors, you counsel your clients about risk. But based on my experience, you don’t take enough risk. Your excessive caution is imperiling your business.

The Myth Of The “Passive Indexing” Revolution

There is little argument that Exchange Traded Funds, more commonly referred to as “ETF’s” have and will continue to change the landscape of investing.

Investors Brace for a Storm of Uncertainty with Gold

Back in November, I wrote that domestic carriers are likely to see the new president—himself the former owner of the now-defunct Trump Airlines—as a strong partner in several key areas. Although a couple of airline CEOs have recently expressed strong opposition to some of Trump’s protectionist immigration policies, yesterday’s meeting appeared to be constructive, with the president telling the group he would soon be announcing something “phenomenal in terms of tax and developing our aviation infrastructure.”

A Way To Really Add Value

There’s one area where you can add value – and where even the most sophisticated software cannot succeed. It’s largely ignored and often misunderstood. It’s also a subject few want to confront, which is why you can play such an important role.

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.