Link in fourth graph of "Reaching New Clients" section of release dated January 30, 2014, should read: http://www.amtd.com/files/doc_news/research/AdvisorIndex_survey_Q22014.pdf (sted http://www.amtd.com/newsroom/research.cfm). The corrected release reads: WITH ECONOMIC OPTIMISM AT A FIVE-YEAR HIGH, RIAS GET SET TO GROW IN 2014 New TD Ameritrade Institutional Advisor Index Study finds regulatory issues top list of concerns, while client referrals and technology offer best growth opportunities Independent registered investment advisors (“RIAs”), buoyed by strong market and client growth last year, say it’s full steam ahead for their businesses and the economy in 2014, according to new findings from the latest TD Ameritrade Institutional Advisor Index Survey. After a year of robust market growth, independent advisors are feeling good. RIAs report revenues were up roughly 20 percent at the end of 2013, and assets under management averaged 20 percent growth as well. More than two thirds of advisors said their client base increased by an average of 13 percent. They are also more optimistic about the U.S. economy than they have been in five years, fueling confidence about their own businesses. Bolstered by referral networks and technology investments, three-fourths of RIAs predict firm assets under management will grow at least as fast as 2013, with 30 percent expecting growth at a 31 percent faster clip, on average. “After another year of double-digit growth on all fronts, advisors have renewed energy and enthusiasm about their prospects,” said Tom Nally, president of TD Ameritrade Institutional. “They’re building on last year’s momentum and serving clients better by making strategic investments in their people and their technology.” Just over half of new client assets came to RIAs from full-commission brokerage firms in 2013. More personalized service and competitive fee-structure is the number one reason clients chose to move to an independent RIA, according to survey respondents. Investing Outlook Heading into 2014, 38 percent of RIAs expect the stock market to continue its upward trajectory and 46 percent say it will remain the same. But advisors are less enthused about the historically low-yielding bond market. More than half say the bond market should stay the course over the next three months, though 41 percent believe bond prices will start to fall in a period when interest rates are widely expected to begin rising.
RIAs anticipate the total rate of return on client investments will average eight percent for the first half of 2014. And they are making slight adjustments to client portfolios to achieve this, moving toward equities at the expense of fixed income. Equities are now 54 percent of client portfolios, compared with 48 percent last year, while fixed-income allocations now average 23 percent of client portfolios, down from 27 percent from last year.Moreover, 42 percent of advisors are searching outside of the bond market for higher yields, investing in asset classes such as international stocks, real estate and energy. Seventy percent of RIAs continue to use exchange-traded funds (ETFs), and 40 percent will increase their usage of these low-cost vehicles over the next 12 months. Advisors Facing Regulatory Issues Advisors report their top business concerns are regulatory changes, firm profitability and growth. A full 71 percent of RIAs claim that the potential burdens and costs they will have to manage as a result of the changing regulatory landscape are the biggest competitive threat, followed by growing numbers of investors opting for do-it-yourself investing (33 percent) and broker-dealers offering fee-based investment management services (32 percent). Coping with regulatory change is not simply a business concern for RIAs, it’s potentially one of the biggest obstacles to firm growth in 2014. As in 2013, advisors also feel challenged by handling increased compliance requirements and dealing with an aging client base. “The biggest hurdles to advisor growth don’t disappear overnight – addressing increased compliance requirements, regulatory changes and an aging client base takes time to work through successfully,” said Nally. Gearing Up For Growth RIAs are moving forward with firm-wide strategic initiatives that were in place in 2013. They remain committed to utilizing technology to increase scale, systematizing client service and delivery, and training and developing staff. Implementing these plans will require some infrastructure upgrades, so 66 percent are committing more capital to technology and more than a quarter plan to hire junior advisors to accommodate growth. Augmenting compliance (23 percent) rounds out the top projects this year on advisors’ to-do lists.
The technology upgrades being considered most by advisors are related to:
- Performance reporting
- Portfolio accounting
- Customer relationship management (CRM)
- Document management
- Financial planning
About MaritzSt. Louis-based Maritz is a sales and marketing services company, which helps companies achieve their full potential through understanding, enabling, and motivating employees, channel partners, and customers. Maritz provides market and customer research, communications, learning solutions, incentive initiatives, rewards and recognition, effective meeting, event and incentive travel management services, and customer loyalty programs. For more information, visit www.maritz.com or contact us at 1-877-4MARITZ. TD Ameritrade and Orion Advisor Services, LLC are separate and unaffiliated companies, and are not responsible for each other’s policies or services. About TD Ameritrade Institutional TD Ameritrade Institutional 1 is a leading provider of comprehensive brokerage and custody services to more than 4,500 fee-based, independent registered investment advisors and their clients. Our advanced technology platform, coupled with personal support from our dedicated service teams, allows advisors to run their practices more efficiently and optimize time with clients. About TD Ameritrade Holding Corporation Millions of investors and independent investment advisors have turned to TD Ameritrade’s (NYSE: AMTD) technology, people and education to help make investing and trading easier. Our clients want to take control and we help them decide how, whether online, over the phone, in a branch or with an independent investment advisor. We’ve been bringing Wall Street to Main Street for more than 36 years. An official sponsor of the 2014 U.S. Olympic Team, TD Ameritrade has time and again been recognized as a leader in investment services. Please visit TD Ameritrade’s newsroom or www.amtd.com for more information. Brokerage services provided by TD Ameritrade, Inc., member FINRA ( www.FINRA.org) /SIPC ( www.SIPC.org) /NFA ( www.nfa.futures.org) 1TD Ameritrade Institutional is a division of TD Ameritrade, Inc., a brokerage subsidiary of TD Ameritrade Holding Corporation. Access to the Veo platform’s open access capabilities is provided as a service to independent advisors using the brokerage, execution and custody services of TD Ameritrade. Veo open access is an indication of potential programming compatibility. It does not imply any TD Ameritrade, Inc. recommendation of, endorsement of, warranty of, or fitness for use of any third party’s products or services. TD Ameritrade is not responsible for information, opinions or services provided by a third party. Since TD Ameritrade must ensure that all vendors meet security requirements, integration with new vendors is not immediate and cannot be guaranteed.