We’re pleased to have worked with Envestnet on the Asset Manager of the Year Awards again this year. According to Tim Clift, chief investment strategist of Envestnet | PMC, Envestnet’s Portfolio Management Consultants group, these awards have evolved in tandem with the industry over the past 15 years.
“The awards recognize all the hard work that goes into active portfolio management,” he said. “And there’s a lot of hard work that goes into finding the best managers by our research team — identifying them, going on site visits, drilling them on what their best practices are and seeing that they actually do what they say they are going to do.”
The recognition of these top strategists, Clift points out, is extremely valuable as active management has become a tough field thanks to the huge growth in passive investing. “Seeing these active managers — who [work hard] for the fees that they charge, outperform and really do what they promise to do — is very exciting,” he explained. “I love giving out these awards.”
The nine Asset Manager Award winners of 2019 are featured in the cover story “Rising Above the Market’s Ups and Down,” which also shares the stories of Essential Advisor Award winners. This program recognizes professionals who embody values detailed in the book “The Essential Advisor,” co-authored by Envestnet President Bill Crager.
Our other “big” coverage this month concerns Regulation Best Interest, the Securities and Exchange Commission’s just-approved advice-standards package, which includes a new customer relationship summary and a new interpretation of “solely incidental” advice. A complete timeline of how this package came to be is found in Melanie Waddell’s Washington Watch, while analysis of the latest regulatory regime is highlighted in her Playing Field column.
Reg BI is “a mixed bag,” according to Barbara Roper, director of investor protection for the Consumer Federation of America. The SEC, “Made some tweaks to the rule that move it in the right direction — in particular by including the prohibition on placing the broker’s interest ahead of the customer’s interest in the rule’s compliance safe harbor — but that’s more than outweighed by their weakening of the conflict provisions, where conflicts now only have to be mitigated at the individual level, and firm-level conflicts are addressed exclusively through disclosure.”