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Lincoln Financial Rolls Out ETF-Only Variable Annuity: Portfolio Products

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Lincoln Financial Group launched an ETF-only variable annuity designed to help fee-based advisors address their clients’ retirement income challenges – “Lincoln Core Income, built with iShares.”

Developed through a strategic collaboration with BlackRock, Lincoln Core Income features an investment selection consisting entirely of ETFs. Notable features include no surrender charge and total costs less than 1.9%, reflecting contract charges and investment option waivers. The guaranteed lifetime income equal to 4% of the initial deposit increases annually by a 2% cost of living adjustment.  

According to Cerulli, passive investing is growing at a faster rate among advisors than actively managed assets, and advisors expect this trend to continue, estimating that more than a third of their client portfolios will be in passive allocations over the next two years.

“Incorporating stand-alone ETFs into variable annuities is an innovative development; the low expense ratios of ETFs may offer an advantage compared to the cost of other options available, and offer both advisor and consumer value,” adds Bing Waldert, head of U.S. research at Cerulli.   

According to Will Fuller, president of annuity solutions at Lincoln Financial, annuities can help savers create predictable lifetime income in retirement.

“Fee-based annuities present a significant long-term growth opportunity and we expect this product to help capture the shift toward passive investing – providing fee-based and registered investment advisors with a solution that can help their clients address income needs in retirement,” Fuller said. 

BlackRock is customizing a version of its iRetire digital retirement planning tool available to financial advisors who wish to explore certain features of Lincoln Core Income with their clients. With this customized version of the iRetire tool, advisors will be able to see the potential benefits of adding guaranteed lifetime income into their clients’ financial plans.

HealthSavings Administrators Launches HSA Featuring Franklin Templeton Funds

HealthSavings Administrators – which is among the top 1% of the nation’s health savings account investment companies in accounts and assets – launched a new HSA exclusively featuring mutual funds from Franklin Templeton Investments.

This new HSA gives investors access to 17 Franklin Templeton funds spanning a wide range of asset classes and strategies. Upon opening an account, participants can invest in one or more of these funds via HealthSavings’ first-dollar investment program, which enables accountholders to save efficiently for both current and future health care expenses without large minimum balance requirements.

E-Trade Expands Lineup With 47 More Commission-Free ETFs and 1,900 More No-Transaction-Fee Mutual Funds

E-Trade Financial Corp. announced a significant expansion of its commission-free ETF and no-transaction-fee mutual fund lineup.

E-Trade now offers a total of 133 commission-free ETFs and more than 4,400 no-transaction-feemutual funds.

Since Jan. 3, 2017, E-trade has added 1,900 no-load or load waived, no-transaction-fee mutual funds, along with five new ETF providers offering certain commission-free ETFs — ETF Securities, Guggenheim Investments, IndexIQ, John Hancock and JPMorgan — totaling 47 new commission-free ETFs altogether.

A full list of the ETFs added to the platform is available here.

Inspire Investing Launches Biblically Responsible ETFs

Inspire Investing is launching biblically responsible ETFs that are designed to identify stocks’ biblically based ideological values, such as hunger relief and human rights.

Inspire Small/Mid Cap Impact, Inspire Corporate Bond Impact and Inspire Global Hope Large Cap provide optimized returns by selecting equities through a biblical framework. The independent wealth management firm will seed the funds on Monday and go live on the New York Stock Exchange on Tuesday.

The underlying indexes are the Inspire Small/Mid Cap Impact Equal Weight Index and the Inspire Global Hope Large Cap Equal Weight Index.

The ETFs’ stocks are screened using Inspire’s revolutionary Inspire Impact Score methodology, which measures a company’s positive impact on customers, communities, workplaces and the world. Using publicly available data, the methodology endorses moral principles supported by Christian scriptures and excludes companies that violate human rights, sell pornography or engage in other unfavorable practices.

Covisum Acquires PrairieSmarts’ Risk Tools to Bring Enhanced Suite of Retirement Planning Tools 

Two companies are joining forces to offer financial advisors powerful risk analytics with retirement planning solutions. PrairieSmarts’ advanced risk management platform for financial services professionals has been acquired by Covisum, a retirement income planning technology and training solution.

All products will continue to be available for purchase for advisor offices or as an enterprise-wide solution.

Beginning later this year, advisors will be able to utilize the products on a singular web-based platform by Covisum. Current PrairieSmarts users will continue to have access to the platform’s integrations with Orion Advisors and Redtail Technology.

Beaumont Capital Management Strategies Offered on New Platforms

Beaumont Capital Management, a leading provider of tactical, ETF-based investment solutions, is now making its strategies available through HedgeCoVest LLC, a unified managed accounts platform, and SMArt Xchange, an alliance partnership between HedgeCoVest LLC and SS&C Advent.

Ten Beaumont Capital Management strategies are now available through HedgeCoVest and its white labelled SMArt Xchange platform, including the suite of Sector and Decathlon strategies.

The sub-advisory relationship with HedgeCoVest will offer investment advisors access to BCM’s defensive-oriented growth strategies through HedgeCoVest or through SMArtXchange for Advent clients.

Solactive Launches New Smart Beta Approach to Investing In U.S. Preferred Shares

The Solactive US Preferred Share Select Index and the Solactive US Preferred Share Select Hedged to CAD Index bring to the market a new smart beta approach to investing in U.S. preferred shares.

These indexes track the performance of higher dividend paying U.S.-listed preferred shares that have been selected based on a set of market-cap, quality and liquidity screenings.

The Solactive US Preferred Share Select Hedged to CAD Index takes the concept a step further by adding a currency hedging to Canadian dollars through FX forward contracts.

These indexes are used as the underlying indexes for the BMO US Preferred Share Index ETF (ZUP/ZUP.U) and the BMO US Preferred Share Hedged to CAD Index ETF (ZHP).

— Read last week’s roundup here: Lincoln Financial, AIG Launch Fee-Based Annuities: Top Portfolio Products


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