To provide our clients with high quality tailored consulting and research, we need to know the financial services industry and our clients. To build lasting and profitable relationships, we dedicate ourselves to staying not just current on, but ahead of industry trends. This blog is intended to share our industry insights and, at the same time, to capture feedback from our readers.
National account teams are leading the distribution charge as asset managers battle severe headwinds in the intermediary wealth management market. Leading asset managers recognize their importance and are investing time, money and resources to build a talented team of platform and product professionals.
It’s no secret the growth of managed accounts (fee-based) is having a major impact on the existing relationships asset managers have with their distribution partners. While there are many factors which have contributed to this growth – including regulation, technology, demographics and new competitive entrants – the result is the amplified scrutiny of approved products and the increasing influence of model portfolios on advisor decision-making and investment selection.
Bottom-line: National Accounts – both platform development professionals and research analysts – are critical to the success of asset managers!
Many distribution organizations are taking action now. Here are a few takeaways from our recent... [read more]
The investment industry is undergoing a period of transformation. Asset managers are increasingly shifting their focus from manufacturing products to developing solutions. Meanwhile, in the financial advisory space, goals-based wealth management is becoming the new way to do business.
But why are these changes taking place? What are the drivers behind this industry transformation? Fee compression and product commoditization are often identified as the reasons why asset managers must ‘up their game,’ by designing solutions rather than just creating more products. At the same time, shifts in advisor business models are often attributed to regulatory changes. While all of these are relevant considerations, however, there’s an underlying factor that’s arguably even more important: investors’ changing lifestyles and priorities.
Historically, designing investment solutions – at least for the majority of mass affluent investors – was seen as a relatively straightforward process. Advisors felt safe to assume that... [read more]
The largest asset managers are taking the turmoil in the industry seriously, investing heavily in data, national accounts, changing the role of wholesaling and de-channelizing, while the rest of the industry is hoping for the glory days to return.
Strong markets continue to drive record AUM, lifting asset-generated fees. Operating margins recovered in the second quarter of 2017, and AUM grew by 12.1%. This may seem like great news for the industry, and in the short term it is certainly a welcome reprieve. But when you consider the broader perspective, it actually masks the real problems facing the majority of active asset managers.
For the last two and half years, we have seen negative flows of $485.6 billion in active funds and active ETFs. At the same time, $1.3 trillion have poured into passive funds and ETFs. What will happen if the 8-year bull market... [read more]