Fidelity Investments said the number of its 401(k) plans with at least $1 million hit 157,000 in the first quarter, up 45% compared with a year ago and an all-time high. The average contribution rate as of Q1 was 8.6%, the highest level in almost a decade.
Advisers who are trying the same marketing tactics over and over and not seeing results need to refresh their approach, writes Kali Roberge of Creative Advisor Marketing. She offers three ways advisers can build meaningful relationships with clients, starting with meeting target audiences where they are instead of trying to convince them that they're wrong.
The value of cryptocurrencies has reached $191 billion, the lowest amount since November, as investors sell in the wake of falling prices. "People are starting to realize that they drove this stuff up in a feeding frenzy, and they're starting to realize just how dangerous it is," says Mark Grant of B. Riley FBR.
An analysis by the Center for Economic and Policy Research found that about half of people age 65 and older rely on Social Security for half of their income and about one-quarter get 90% of their income from it. The analysis also found that women and people of color rely on Social Security more than other groups.
Hedge funds are receiving greater allocations from Chinese high-net-worth investors than individual stocks, Yue Zhang of CreditEase said. Chinese regulators, however, are seeking to bolster stock market investment and tighten oversight of financial firms, which means asset managers face "serious obstacles to doing business" in the country, PwC said in a report.
A report titled "Efficient Flows," to be released this month by AIMA and the CAIA Association, will explore four key aspects of liquidity and how they apply to hedge fund strategies, writes CAIA Association CEO Bill Kelly. Some regulators have sought prescriptive methods of calculating and disclosing liquidity, which can be effective "in periods of tranquility," although "[t]imes of stress are quite a different story and it is here that liquidity measurement is more of an art than it is science," Kelly writes.
Hedge funds are putting about $900,000 annually into alternative data, according to a Greenwich Associates report, which questions the effectiveness of such data as it becomes more mainstream. Greenwich surveyed 40 mostly quantitative investment managers this year and found frustration over the lack of standardization in modeling or testing the results of such data.
Hedge fund returns were 0.59% on average last month and 0.79% for January through July, as macro and managed futures products' underperformance is offsetting strong performance in other areas, eVestment said. Investor sentiment likely is questionable regarding macro strategies and low regarding managed futures, according to eVestment.
When the ERISA Advisory Council asked companies about the policy change that would do the most to improve retirees' access to lifetime income, a "better safe harbor for selecting an annuity provider" was the most common response. "A clear, simple safe harbor is a necessary first step to increase the interest of plan sponsors in adding lifetime income options to their plans," said American Benefits Council Senior Vice President Lynn Dudley in testimony to the ERISA council.
The Dutch-based financial firm Aegon said it is making progress in cutting its costs through a variety of measures including outsourcing the administration of its life and annuity business in the US. About two-thirds of the company's business in the US.