Eight for one: TD Ameritrade launches platform with slate of investment managers

Key Points
  • The Model Market Center platform makes third-party investment managers available to advisors.
  • Eight managers are present so far, including Goldman Sachs and Russell Investments.
  • More than 1,000 independent registered investment advisors have signed on.
Jacob Wackerhausen | iStock / 360 | Getty Images

Financial advisors who'd like to spend less time building investment models from scratch can now offload some of that work to TD Ameritrade.

On Wednesday the Jersey City, New Jersey-based custodian announced the formal launch of Model Market Center, its new investment platform.

Available for free to registered investment advisors who custody their assets at TD Ameritrade, the Model Market Center allows advisors to choose from a selection of models from eight third-party asset managers.

Managers on the platform include Goldman Sachs Asset Management, State Street Global Advisors and Russell Investments. The platform is also compatible with iRebal, TD Ameritrade's rebalancing and tax-loss harvesting program.

DIY vs. Do-It-For-Me

Although financial advisors using the platform may outsource their investment management, they still retain control over other aspects, including when to implement the model and how often clients' assets should be rebalanced.

"This is a hybrid approach where the advisor doesn't have to do it themselves anymore, but they also don't have to give up control," said Danielle Fava, director of financial technology product strategy at TD Ameritrade Institutional.

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Prior to TD Ameritrade's introduction of the Model Market Center, financial advisors could dig up individual mutual funds and exchange-traded funds and create their own asset allocation models.

Alternatively, an advisor could outsource everything to a "turnkey asset management program," or TAMP, pay a fee and then share their fiduciary responsibility. In that case, advisors also give up control over how to manage the assets.

The Model Market Center is available for free to financial advisors who custody-assets with TD Ameritrade. More than 1,000 have signed on since the platform's soft launch on Oct. 30, 2017.

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