Retired couple fishing.BNY Mellon’s Pershing launched a new solution to help firms and plan advisors achieve greater consistency and efficiency in how they service retirement plans.

The Retirement Plan Oversight Tool underscores Pershing’s continued focus on bolstering its retirement plan offerings.

“The future of the DOL Rule may be in limbo, but firms had been looking to improve oversight of ERISA plans well before the DOL tried to expand the definition of fiduciary,” said Robert Cirrotti, managing director and head of retirement and investment solutions at BNY Mellon’s Pershing, in a statement. “Our oversight tool creates greater transparency for firms to manage where and when they act in a fiduciary capacity, leading to improved business controls and governance practices.”

The Retirement Plan Oversight Tool, implemented as part of Pershing’s existing Retirement Plan Network, is an integrated compliance and oversight tool that allows home offices to create up to four sets of best practices and protocols for their plan advisors to follow when servicing retirement business.

Once a firm establishes a set of requirements, plan advisors utilize the tool to guide how they service their individual retirement plan business and document their adherence to their firm’s requirements. An easy-to-understand dashboard can be viewed in real-time by both plan advisors and home office employees for seamless management of retirement plan business.

“We built this tool based on comprehensive feedback from our clients, retirement plan advisors and the industry at large,” Cirrotti said in a statement. “The goal was to develop a solution that helps create consistency in how retirement plans are serviced and enhances the compliance experience for both plan advisors and executives.”

Harvest Announces Launch of Practice Management Hub

Harvest launched its Practice Management Hub for financial advisors.

With nearly 70,000 financial advisors active on its platform, Harvest is launching this new portal based on user feedback and client demand.

The Harvest Practice Management Hub is a gated microsite for financial professionals that will house valuable, relevant content on building a financial advisory practice sourced from the top asset managers in the world.

Harvest designed the Hub to be a place where financial advisors can access practice management thought leadership in a compliant and user-friendly environment.

Vestwell Partners With Namely To Provide Digital Retirement Platform With Payroll Integration

Digital retirement platform Vestwell is partnering with Namely, a leading HR platform for mid-sized companies, to provide an all-in-one retirement experience for plan sponsors and their employees.

Vestwell’s retirement offering will now integrate into Namely’s platform. Through single sign on, users will gain access to key benefits and retirement information, all in one place. More importantly, the new offering provides payroll integration, thus removing the significant administrative burden from plan sponsors of providing ongoing payroll information and updated election deferrals.

Namely clients interested in Vestwell’s services for their retirement offering will benefit from a simplified payroll integration, fast and easy onboarding, transparent pricing, and streamlined administration.

J.P. Morgan Collaborates with BlackRock to Launch New ESG Suite of Indices

J.P. Morgan announced a new suite of global fixed income indices that integrates environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors in a composite benchmark and overweights green bonds.

The idea for J.P. Morgan ESG (JESG) was conceived in collaboration with BlackRock to address growing demand from bond investors looking for a benchmark that targets emerging market issuers with strong ESG practices.

The suite of indices is independently managed by J.P. Morgan and will cater to investors looking to gradually incorporate ESG and responsible investing in their overall fixed income investment strategies by anchoring its methodology around the bank’s widely used flagship indices such as the EMBI, GBI-EM and the CEMBI.

The initial JESG index is available for the EMBI Global Diversified, GBI-EM Global Diversified and CEMBI Broad Diversified.

The JESG index scores for over 170 countries and 650+ issuers are calculated daily, using data from Sustainalytics, RepRisk, and Climate Bonds Initiative (CBI) as inputs. Ethical screening is also applied for the following controversial sectors: Thermal Coal, Tobacco, Weapons and any violator of the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC) principles.

Hartford Funds Adds New Actively Managed Fixed Income ETF

Hartford Funds broadened its exchange-traded fund lineup with the launch of the Hartford Schroders Tax-Aware Bond ETF (HTAB).

This expands Hartford Funds’ roster to five actively managed fixed income ETFs and seven multifactor ETFs.

HTAB, which is sub-advised by Schroder Investment Management North America Inc., seeks total return on an after-tax basis by investing in a diversified portfolio of taxable and tax-exempt fixed income debt instruments of varying maturities.

HTAB seeks to add value by working to capitalize on imbalances in the relationships among sectors and individual bonds, spanning both tax-exempt municipals and U.S. dollar-denominated taxable bonds. The strategy manages interest-rate risk by shifting between sectors, assessing market conditions and adjusting duration. HTAB has an expense ratio of 0.39%.

Cboe Global Markets Launches One-Year Volatility Index

Cboe Global Markets announced the launch of up-to-the-minute market estimates of one-year volatility, the Cboe One-Year Volatility Index (VIX1Y), calculated by using real-time prices of options in the S&P 500 Index (SPX).

VIX1Y will give traders the ability to track the relative movements of one-month and one-year expected volatility. Cboe also expect the one-year index to be a useful tool to monitor the market’s expectations for longer-term volatility for investors with longer-duration liabilities, such as insurance companies and pension funds.

The original VIX Index, which Cboe began publishing in April 1993, measures the 30-day expected volatility of the S&P 500 Index.

The VIX1Y uses SPX options on the March expiration cycle that reference most closely a 366-day maturity, then weights them to yield a constant measure of volatility in the S&P 500 Index over the period of approximately one year.

 

Solactive Introduces Autonomous & Electric Vehicles Index

Solactive launched an index tracking the performance of companies involved in the production of electric or hybrid vehicles and the development of self-driving technology.

The Solactive Autonomous & Electric Vehicles Index is based on ARTISTM, a proprietary algorithm-based screening tool developed by Solactive.

ARTISTM,  an acronym for Algorithmic Theme Identification System, makes use of systems such as natural language processing to select companies that have best exposure to specific themes. The Solactive Autonomous & Electric Vehicles Index is licensed to Global X and is used as the basis for the Global X Autonomous & Electric Vehicles ETF (DRIV) listed on the NASDAQ stock exchange.

Solactive and UBS Launch World Bank & Development Bank Debt Indices

Solactive issued a new family of financial benchmarks targeting the World Bank and other high-grade development bank debt.

The Solactive UBS Development Bank Bond Index Family i focuses on a field of sustainable investment that has not been widely explored before: development banks.

According to Solactive, development banks are supranational institutions that gather funds for development projects with positive social and environmental impact. Purposes of these projects can vary greatly; however, the majority are covered in the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals.

With these indices, investors will be able to support an economic development agenda by investing in large baskets of fixed income instruments issued by high-grade financial institutions. In addition, the family can be used as a transparent benchmark for active managers interested in the performance of the development bank sector.

Informa Financial Intelligence’s New Zephyr Platform Features Advanced Analytics

Informa Financial Intelligence updated its Zephyr platform to include advanced analytics that allow financial advisors to quickly and easily analyze potential investments, client portfolios and create compelling presentations and reports.

The recent update of the Zephyr platform adds more features along with powerful analytics and customizable reporting capabilities.

According to Informa, the Zephyr platform is designed to simplify the due diligence process to help advisors and analysts make the best investment decisions. The program allows users to screen thousands of investment products with sorting, filtering and statistical tools.

Zephyr allows advisors to easily track and compare multiple investment products, run returns-based style analysis, and build portfolios using a variety of optimization techniques.

The platform’s reporting tools can also be used to create presentations that support meaningful client discussions with informative graphs that display a client’s portfolio, and customized reports that compare selected managers to industry benchmarks.

 

 

 

Direxion Unveils Robotics, AI and Automation Index

Direxion launched the Direxion Daily Robotics, Artificial Intelligence & Automation Index Bull 3X Shares (UBOT).

The fund seeks to achieve 300% of the daily performance of the Indxx Global Robotics and Artificial Intelligence Thematic Index, which is designed to provide exposure to exchange-listed companies in developed markets that are expected to benefit from the adoption and utilization of robotics and/or Artificial Intelligence (AI). This includes companies involved in Industrial Robotics and Automation, Non-Industrial Robots, Artificial Intelligence and Autonomous Vehicles. The net expense ratio is 1.22%

Check out VanEck Launches Real Asset ETF as Inflation Hedge: Portfolio Products on ThinkAdvisor.