June 25, 2011

Top Portfolio Products: Deutsche Bank Rebrands; Gemini Launches New Trust

Phoenix Companies introduce annuity; Strategic Insight, PLANSPONSOR bring out Pathfinder 2.0

This past week, Deutsche Bank rebranded 5 ETFs; Gemini launched a second mutual fund trust; The Phoenix Companies introduced a new annuity; and Strategic Insight and PLANSPONSOR jointly announced a new version of Pathfinder.

1) Deutsche Bank Rebrands 5 ETFs as Target Date Funds

Deutsche Bankannounced on June 21 the rebranding of five ETFs to join its recently launched db-X suite of products. The five funds, previously known as the TDX Independence Funds, are now known as the db-X Target Date Funds. They seek to track the Zacks Lifecycle indexes and are designed to provide investors with a single investment to diversify across domestic equities, international equities and fixed income, based on a fixed investment horizon.

The rebranding doubles the number of ETFs offered under Deutsche Bank’s db-X umbrella. The funds and their new names are as follows:

  • db-X 2010 Target Date Fund (TDD), formerly TDX Independence 2010 ETF;
  • db-X 2020 Target Date Fund (TDH), formerly TDX Independence 2020 ETF;
  • db-X 2030 Target Date Fund (TDN), formerly TDX Independence 2030 ETF;
  • db-X 2040 Target Date Fund (TDV), formerly TDX Independence 2040 ETF;and
  • db-X In-Target Date Fund (TDX), formerly TDX Independence In-Target ETF.

2) Gemini Launches Northern Lights Fund Trust II

Gemini Fund Services, LLC said on June 21 that it launched of Northern Lights Fund Trust II (NLFT II), its second shared mutual fund trust. Through the trust, Gemini partners with advisors to develop pooled investment solutions, focusing on alternative investment funds in order to help meet growing market demand.

NLFT II, like the first Northern Lights Fund Trust, is a shared mutual fund trust of independent funds, all managed by separate advisors. The original trust has proven very successful, doubling assets in 2010 and increasing by another 20% in the first quarter of 2011.

To date, the original trust has almost 70 funds and more than $5.6 billion in assets. So far, advisors managing five funds have joined the new trust to gain operational efficiency, economies of scale, regulatory compliance and board oversight, and fund sales on a scale otherwise not achievable.

3) The Phoenix Companies Launches Premier LifeStyle Annuity

The Phoenix Companies, Inc. announced on June 22 the introduction of the Premier LifeStyle Annuity, the newest offering developed through its strategic alliance with The AltiSure Group.

The product is a single-premium indexed annuity with four indexed accounts, principal protection from investment loss and a guaranteed lifetime withdrawal benefit. Designed for both pre-retirees and retirees, the Premier LifeStyle Annuity is available exclusively through The AltiSure Group and offers an innovative blend of product features.

The annuity offers two unique benefits: 1) the Safety Growth Strategy, an index crediting strategy that allows for greater growth potential than traditional cap crediting strategies, and 2) the Enhanced Guaranteed Income and Family Wealth Transfer Benefit (Enhanced G.I.F.T. Benefit), an optional rider that combines guaranteed lifetime withdrawals with an enhanced death benefit for one charge.

4) Strategic Insight and PLANSPONSOR Introduce Pathfinder 2.0

Strategic Insightand PLANSPONSOR announced June 21 that they have introduced Pathfinder 2.0,a unique Web-based tool that enables financial advisers with a retirement plan practice to compare and select retirement plan providers that best match plan sponsor needs; retain clients with a higher degree of efficiency; and increase productivity and close ratio for new business. The new release is built on Salesforce.com’s Force.com Web-based platform.

Pathfinder 2.0 has an individual adviser version as well as an enterprise version for broker-dealers, RIAs and Defined Contribution Investment Only (DCIO) firms that seek to provide additional services to advisers. With Pathfinder 2.0, financial advisers receive:

  • the ability to tailor a search across the nation's leading recordkeepers
  • quick and easy access to an extensive library of RFP/RFI questions
  • detailed side-by-side comparisons of the 401(k) industry's top service providers
  • access to Strategic Insight’s mutual fund and ETF investment data
  • customized client reports.

Read last week’s Portfolio Products RounRoundup at AdvisorOne.com

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