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Friday, January 19, 2018

TD's Fava Hunts For More Model Managers

Reported by Kenny He

One of the big three RIA custodians is looking for asset managers to add to its new platform for model portfolios. The MFWire broke the news back in February 2017 that TD Ameritrade Institutional was working on the platform, and since its release in October 2017, Model Market Center currently has more than 1,000 independent RIA users.

Fast forward 11 months, TD is officially launching Model Market Center, a technology platform for TD-affiliated RIAs that fuses the rebalancing software iRebal and trading platform Veo with readily available third party investment models.

With the platform, advisors can select from 67 investment models offered by eight asset managers: Anchor Capital Asset Management with six models; CLS Investments with eight models; Cambria Investments with six models; Goldman Sachs Asset Management with nine models; Russell Investments with 15 models; State Street Global Advisors with five models; Wilshire Associates with 10 models; and WisdomTree Investments with eight models.

Spokespeople for Anchor Capital Asset Management, Russell, Wilshire, and WisdomTree did not return calls for comment. A spokesperson for Goldman Sachs was not immediately able to comment.

The TD team is also looking for more asset managers to include on the new platform.

"And this is only the beginning. Model Market Center is an open-architecture platform and we expect to add more providers and models over time," states Danielle Fava, director of product strategy and development at TD Ameritrade.

To be eligible for inclusion on the new platform, asset managers must be GIPS compliant, oversee 250 million AUM in the US with five years of experience, and report their performance to Morningstar platform so another third party can validate their performance.

"Advisors are increasingly seeking efficiencies. With this platform, we are delivering what we believe to be a more modern approach," states Fava.

Advisors can now directly access a pool of "ready made models, with complete asset allocations from third parties," Fava says. Before the new open-architecture platform, RIAs could only follow their own strategy and would have to build their own models, Fava adds.

"Right now we are having conversations with advisors around dynamic asset allocation, fixed income, ESG and glide path," Jill Mavro, head of strategic relationships for the global SPDR business, tells the MFWire in an emailed statement. It is about satisfying our client demand rather than throwing everything up and seeing what sticks. We want to be thoughtful about what we deliver."

"CLS is dedicated to providing advisors with low-cost investment solutions that add value to an investor’s portfolio, and partnering with TD enables us to further this mission," Ryan Beach, CEO of CLS Investments, tells the MFWire in an emailed statement.

"We believe our six Trinity models provides advisors a complete array of choices for allocating client assets," Meb Faber, CIO of Cambria Investments tells the MFWire in an emailed statement.

"That said, as we launch additional funds and listen to advisor feedback, we're certainly open to considering this."  

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