September 15, 2010

TD Ameritrade Launches New Unified Managed Account Platform

RIAs will have more portfolio management flexibility and investment choice

TD Ameritrade Institutional (TDAI) has rolled out a new Unified Managed Account Exchange (UMAX) that expands the types of investments independent RIAs can offer clients and provides more flexibility in how the portfolios are managed, the firm announced Wednesday.

Two distinct investment management solutions are available on the UMAX platform: an open architecture approach in which advisors can construct solutions from a large universe of products using their own research and product selection strategy, and a bundled option that includes robust product research and asset allocation guidance.

UMAs are a form of fee-based investment solutions that allow advisors to combine multiple professionally managed investment products into a single account with automated services such as rebalancing, performance reporting, billing and advanced functionality such as tax management and managing securities restrictions. TDAI said the UMA construct has gained popularity with advisors because of UMAs ability to streamline many of the administrative, paperwork and operational inefficiencies of using multiple separately managed accounts as they seek to implement a holistic approach to managing a client’s portfolio.

TDAI said that through the open-architecture approach, advisors can use their own portfolios and research with access to thousands of investment vehicles including separately managed account strategies, mutual funds, ETFs, ETNs, closed-end funds, third party strategists and alternative asset classes. Within the UMAX platform, advisors can also choose a bundled approach that includes institutional-caliber third-party research and due diligence.

Placemark Investments, which provides overlay management services to the wealth management industry, is responsible for trading accounts in UMAX and customizing portfolios where appropriate for tax management, security or social restrictions or based on client risk attributes.

TDAI is a division of TD Ameritrade Inc., a brokerage subsidiary of TD Ameritrade Holding Corp.

Michael S. Fischer (msf7@columbia.edu) is a New York-based financial writer and editor and a frequent contributor to WealthManagerWeb.com.

Reprints Discuss this story
This is where the comments go.