NU Online News Service, May 27, 2004, 3:23 p.m. EDT – Assets are still growing at bank third-party marketing operations.[@@]

Kenneth Kehrer Associates, Princeton, N.J., comes to that conclusion in a new report on bank TPMs.

The continued growth of assets at bank TPMs shows that the TPMs are strong enough to cope with the recent expansion of banks’ own broker-dealer operations, says Kenneth Kehrer, whose firm compiled the bank TPM report.

Most third-party broker dealers that did business in banks recorded strong increases in dollars invested in 2003, Kehrer says.

Independent Financial Marketing Group Inc., Purchase, N.Y., a unit of Sun Life Financial Inc., Toronto, led the bank TPM pack by selling bank customers $7.2 billion in annuities, mutual funds, general securities and individual stocks and bonds in 2003.

IFMG’s sales increased 2% between 2002 and 2003, Kehrer reports.

In general, TPMs and broker-dealers that focus on selling securities did better than firms that rely more on fixed annuities, Kehrer says.