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Allianz Life expanded its advisory channel services with the launch of Allianz Advisory Solutions, an expanded suite of products and services built specifically for RIAs to help enhance their risk management capabilities, the company said.

Allianz Advisory Solutions is built on three core pillars: Risk Management Solutions, Advanced Strategies and Planning, and Technology and Platforms.

Separately, Allianz Life’s Allianz Investment Management subsidiary announced its AllianzIM U.S. Large Cap Buffer10 Oct ETF (AZAO) and AllianzIM U.S. Large Cap Buffer20 Oct ETF (AZBO) started trading on the New York Stock Exchange Arca, each with a 0.74% net expense ratio.

The exchange-traded funds were designed to expand the risk management solutions available to investors, the company said. They seek to match the returns of the S&P 500 Price Return Index up to a stated cap, while providing a level of risk mitigation through a buffer against the first 10% and 20% of S&P 500 Price Return Index losses for AZAO and AZBO, respectively.

SS&C Teams With Blue Tractor and GSI on Semi-Transparent ETFs

SS&C ALPS Advisors partnered with Blue Tractor Group and GSI Capital Advisors to expand its business into semi-transparent ETFs.

The SS&C Technologies subsidiary filed a short-form exemptive relief application with the Securities and Exchange Commission to offer semi-transparent ETFs powered by Blue Tractor’s Shielded Alpha Semi-Transparent ETF Structure, a wrapper that the companies said in a joint announcement “facilitates the management of actively managed portfolio strategies within an ETF rather than a traditional mutual fund.”

Specifics of the ETFs, including when they are expected to become listed, on what exchange and what the net expense ratios will be, were not provided in the announcement. But the company said Monday the timing was still pending and declined to provide additional details.

RetireOne Partners With Protective to Launch Annuity for RIAs

RetireOne and Protective teamed to bring a new, low-cost advisory variable annuity to market.

With a mortality and expense fee of 30 basis points and subaccounts from Vanguard and DFA, the Protective Investors Benefit Variable Annuity is one of the lowest-cost variable annuities on the market, RetireOne and Protective said in a joint announcement.

“After acquiring Great-West last year, our goal was to capitalize on competitive positioning in the advisory marketplace by delivering solutions that offer tremendous value for investors and the RIA firms who serve them,” according to Aaron Seurkamp, president of the Retirement Division at Protective Life.

T. Rowe Price Adds SoFi Student Loan Solutions

T. Rowe Price Retirement Plan Services introduced a suite of student loan resources, including educational tools and content, within its financial wellness offering.

Plan sponsors will also have the option to include additional offerings, including employer contribution services and access to student loan refinancing, as well as live financial counseling services.

The benefit offerings will be provided by digital personal finance company SoFi through the “SoFi at Work” program, the companies said in a joint announcement.

The tools and educational content will be integrated into T. Rowe Price’s 401(k) participant website, helping participants to manage and plan for their student loan needs while saving for retirement, the companies said.

E-Trade Unveils Enhancements for Stock Plan Participants

E-Trade launched visual and functional enhancements to its stock plan participant user experience.

While employee stock plan benefits keep growing in popularity, plan administrators and participants are seeking scalable digital solutions that “help drive understanding, engagement — and, ultimately, satisfaction,” the company said.

With that need in mind, the new interface on etrade.com provides enhanced features for intuitive navigation and a tailored experience, allowing users to view complete awards at a glance, receive customized messages and seamlessly track performance, it said. Enhancements were made on the participant and administrator fronts.

— Check out last week’s portfolio product roundup hereFirst ETF to Track ‘Blank Check’ Companies Launches: Portfolio Products