LPL Financial (LPLA) announced Tuesday that it has expanded the mutual fund and ETF strategies available on its Model Wealth Portfolios (MWP) platform, adding strategies from AlphaSimplex, J.P. Morgan Asset Management and Morningstar Investment Services.
Additional strategies were added to the platform from LPL Financial Research and BlackRock. Altogether, there are now eight investment management firms offering strategies on MWP.
At the same time, LPL said it had lowered the account minimum for MWP to $25,000 from $100,000; the $100,000 minimum had been in effect since the platform’s launch in 2008.
John Moninger (left), the LPL Financial executive vice president of Advisory and Brokerage Consulting, said the additions were part of a longer-term strategy to add select mutual fund and ETF strategies that follow specific themes such as minimizing taxes, absolute return strategies, tactical investing and risk management. “We didn’t want to build a supermarket,” Moninger said in a Tuesday interview, but rather to offer a “complementary roster of choices that advisors could implement in different ways.”
Lowering the end-client minimum investment for participating in the platform from $100,000 to $25,000 came as a result of “big advisor demand” not merely for clients with lower asset levels but also wealthier clients who wanted to put part of their assets into one of the strategies, Moninger said. There’s also been big advisor buy-in to the MWP platform: assets under management on the platform stood at $8.7 billion as of March 31, 2012, a 72% increase over the prior year. MWP assets stood at $64.7 million shortly after MWP was launched March 31, 2008, LPL said.