The U.S. retirement plan market may represent a historic growth opportunity for registered investment advisors (“RIAs”), yet even experienced firms can be deterred by the time needed to assemble service providers and comply with additional regulation.
To address these concerns, TD Ameritrade Trust Company, 1 a subsidiary of TD Ameritrade Holding Corporation (NYSE:AMTD), has created a turnkey program that simplifies the process of establishing a retirement plan business and, in conjunction with TD Ameritrade Institutional 2, provides ongoing support to turn that opportunity into growth.
The new TD Ameritrade Retirement Plan was built with input from advisors. It offers RIAs a single point of contact for all their 401(k) plan-servicing needs, combining recordkeeping, custody and third-party administration from TD Ameritrade Trust Company, access to thousands of non-proprietary ETFs and mutual funds and the leading RIA services of TD Ameritrade Institutional. Advisors for the first time also can approach clients and prospects with a retirement plan product backed by the TD Ameritrade brand.
“We listened to advisors and they wanted a simplified, branded retirement plan solution to help them gather assets they’re not capturing today,” said Skip Schweiss, managing director, TD Ameritrade Institutional and president, TD Ameritrade Trust Company. “Our new approach gives advisors a streamlined solution with the TD Ameritrade name, which can be a key selling point with plan sponsors.”The U.S. retirement plan market is enormous -- Americans have socked away some $5.6 trillion in 401(k) and other employer-sponsored defined-contribution retirement plans 3 – and it has grown through good markets and bad thanks to a steady stream of new money with every paycheck. 4 It is an attractive business, but one long dominated by a few brokerage, insurance and fund-management giants. 4 Advisors have largely watched from afar, as just 5 percent of RIAs service a meaningful number of 401(k) plans. 4 Recent regulatory changes designed to enhance investor protections, though, have tilted the playing field in the favor of RIAs. The U.S. Labor Department now requires retirement plan providers to fully disclose their services, their compensation and fiduciary status. Industry analysts forecast that employers armed with these disclosures, will shift retirement plans to RIAs 4, where advisors are held to a fiduciary standard of care. “Regulators have changed the ground rules in a way that I believe truly favors fiduciary advisors. Opportunity is knocking and we want to help advisors open that door,” Schweiss said.
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