Enjoy the current installment of "weekend reading for financial planners" - this week's edition kicks off with the news that now TD Ameritrade is joining the "robo" race with a direct-to-consumer offering that will expand its current Amerivest program to compete against the likes of Vanguard and Schwab, including a new "Private Client Services" that may potentially compete against the RIAs who use TDA's custodial services, too. And also in the news this week was the announcement that Pershing is launching its own robo-advisor-for-advisors solution, partnered with newcomer Marstone.
From there, we have a few technical planning articles this week, from a look at important IRA-rollover-related "goofs" to avoid, to a discussion of the potential crackdown coming on Family Limited Partnership (FLP) valuation discounts via new Treasury Regulations that may soon be issued, and also a discussion of how income annuities may better support the fixed-income portion of a retirement portfolio over just using traditional bonds.
We also have several practice management articles, including: how advisors are increasingly adopting "virtual" location-independent business models that serve clients through telephone, email, and video conferencing technology; a discussion of how advisors operating as a sole proprietorship or single-member LLC could be creating client continuity planning problems; a look at the benefits of "reverse mentoring" (where experienced advisors take on a Millennial to get their own mentoring about today's 20- and 30-somethings); how employees at many advisory firms are actually quite unhappy, and why the fix is not just to pay them more; and a discussion of best practices to try to minimize employee turnover and retain to advisory firm talent.
We wrap up with three interesting articles: the first is a look at whether the whole concept of monthly "budgeting" is overrated or outright impossible, as research increasingly shows the reality is simply that our income and expenses are not as stable and consistent as a typical budgeting process would imply; the second is an in-depth look at how a credit bureau "security freeze" works and why advisors might consider it for themselves and their clients; and the last is a discussion of whether Wall Street's threat to abandon small investors if the DOL's fiduciary comes to pass may be both an empty threat, and one that is irrelevant because if Wall Street does abandon small investors, there are other organizations like Garrett Planning Network, XY Planning Network, and more, ready and waiting to fill the void.
And be certain to check out Bill Winterberg's "Bits & Bytes" video on the latest in advisor tech news at the end, including the announcement of Pershing's new partnership with robo-advisor-for-advisors Marstone, recent major growth milestones for advisor-client PFM solution Wealth Access, and a new open-sourced wealth management platform that advisory firms might develop for their own use, called Wealthbot.io.
Enjoy the reading!