What You Need to Know
- TDA Institutional’s Strategy Desk became available to Schwab advisors in a phased launch starting in January.
- All Schwab advisors now have access to Strategy Desk's educational resources.
- The addition comes as Schwab continues to integrate TD.
As part of Charles Schwab’s ongoing TD Ameritrade integration that includes a combined custody platform, Schwab advisors can now access free educational resources offered by TDA Institutional’s Strategy Desk.
Meanwhile, enhancements are planned for Schwab’s Trading Services offerings, according to Michael McKerr, director of trading services at Schwab.
Strategy Desk started as a service at TD Institutional in 2011 and had been offered free to TD advisors, McKerr told ThinkAdvisor. It started being rolled out to Schwab advisors in a phased approach in January, he said, noting that it is now open to all Schwab advisors free of charge.
The free Strategy Desk educational resources include one-on-one options strategy consultations for portfolio-specific needs, weekly trading-related webcasts featuring Schwab strategists and special guests, to earn CE credits on various topics, and the weekly newsletter Macro Monday.
Pointing to a recent Cerulli study, he said10%-15% of RIAs use options within their practices.
“We see trading as more than just the process of buying and selling,” according to McKerr, who joined TD in 2017 and shifted to Schwab in April 2021, after Schwab’s acquisition of TD was completed in October 2020.
“It’s a process of delivering our advisors personalized trading educational resources, cutting-edge trading technology platforms, enhanced execution services, and alternative investment solutions,” he explained, calling them the “cornerstones of our Trading Services offer” and noting that “our education resources are rooted in the Strategy Desk.”
The completion of the integration of TD into Schwab’s business is still on track to be completed within 36 months, John Tovar, managing director of wealth management services for TD Ameritrade Institutional, said in October.
Although the full integration of TD into Schwab’s platform isn’t expected to be completed until next year, TD reps can now advise their clients on Schwab products, the company disclosed in a winter business update webcast earlier this year.
Strong Demand So Far
The addition of Strategy Desk to Schwab advisors comes as “demand for trading education specifically with options has been almost insatiable,” McKerr said. And that is not just from retail individual investors but also by advisors, he noted. “I think advisors continue to seek education that benefits and betters them as an investor and a fiduciary.”