01 Mar 17
How Not To Screw Up Investment Reviews: Five Must-Have Tools For Advisors

How Not to Screw Up Investment Reviews: Five Must-Have Tools for Advisors

As a trusted advisor, every year you do your due diligence by calling your clients to discuss how their investment did during the year and determine if they need to make any changes. Sound familiar? As an advisor in the plan sponsor retirement space, however, you know only too well that your duties are much more complicated and need to occur more frequently than only in one annual visit. The problem is that, although the expectations for an “investment review” have matured, the tools haven’t kept pace. At Fluent, we think of the plan investment review process as a comprehensive…

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21 Feb 17
Are You A Fiduciary? Don’t Sit On The Fence!

Are you a Fiduciary? Don’t Sit on the Fence!

Are you a fiduciary? Are you REALLY a fiduciary? Trust is key for plan advisors. Clients entrust their financial future to their advisors, so it stands to reason that advisors should put their clients’ best interests first, ahead of their own interests. Disclosure and transparency of any conflicts of interest, code of ethics, risk and fees should be the cornerstone of every fiduciary’s practice. Recently, the Consumer Federation of America issued a report Financial Advisor or Investment Salesperson? Brokers and Insurers Want to Have it Both Ways. The argument is interesting: comply to regulations to be a “trusted fiduciary advisor”…

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07 Feb 17
Advisors – Hang In There!

Advisors – Hang In There!

Help Is On The Way! Now that the Trump administration has ordered an updated economic and legal analysis of the Fiduciary Regulation, every advisor practice is left wondering what is next. We are waiting anxiously to see what impact regulations, new or revised, will have on the work we have all done preparing for the April effective date. No matter the outcome, at Fluent we have more than 20 years of experience in this area. We’ve seen changes large and small over the years and, if anything, it has allowed us to be nimble to stay ahead of the needs…

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27 Oct 16

Fluent Enables Plan Advisors and Relationship Management Teams to Optimize Practices and DOL Compliance

Interested in “Taming the Fiduciary Reg”? New product offering integrates multiple practice management toolkits into one simple and affordable platform OCTOBER 27, 2016 – WOBURN, MA – Today Fluent Technologies announced that is has developed a new, market-leading solution for complying with the recent DOL (Department of Labor) Conflict of Interest Regulation based on survey results, one-on-one interviews and participation in critical industry-sponsored DOL focused seminars. UtopiaAdvisor offers a one-stop-shop to implement a customer’s practices, plus organize and execute everything in terms of the DOL. UtopiaAdvisor allows clients to take a significant step forward in practicing and exceeding regulatory compliance…

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25 Oct 16
Unleashing The Data:  Helping Plan Advisors Deliver Participant Outcomes

Unleashing the Data: Helping Plan Advisors Deliver Participant Outcomes

Get the word on the street from an industry insider and FinTech executive. Michael Zimmer of Fluent Technologies here. I’ve been working in the FinTech space for long enough to know that advisors are tasked with a monumental effort to service clients in the best way possible. Over the years, that service has evolved and grown with market demands. Clients have become incredibly knowledgeable about investments, and that has changed the role of the advisor as well as the tools needed to effectively do the job. Now the advisor’s role is being reshaped again in an era of demand for…

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03 Aug 16
Fluent Tames The Fiduciary Reg

Fluent Tames the Fiduciary Reg

Last week, we read an article in Investment News titled "Salesforce adds compliance features to financial services CRM for DOL fiduciary rule." The author, Alessandra Malito, discusses what the CRM community is doing to help advisors comply, or more likely, protect themselves from the new DOL Fiduciary Rule. That got us thinking: CRMs are not the only software tools that are responding to the new ruling. In anticipation of the ruling impact, Fluent Technologies has taken its own initiative to Tame the Fiduciary Regulation. We knew this would be a challenge and proactively decided to design a solution to meet our customers’…

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13 Jun 16
Overview Of The 5 Recent Lawsuits Filed Against The DOL Fiduciary Regulation

Overview of the 5 Recent Lawsuits Filed Against the DOL Fiduciary Regulation

We can all be forgiven if we have lost track of legal action around the DOL’s fiduciary regulation. As of Monday, June 13th, a total of five lawsuits have now been filed challenging the Department of Labor’s fiduciary regulation. Below is a table giving a snapshot of these initiatives. Overview of Legal Actions Against the DOL Fiduciary Regulation – as of June 13, 2016 Date of Suit Main Plaintiffs Focus of Complaints Venue June 1 USCC, SIFMA, and 7 other organizations Broad, with attack on DOL’s lack of authority in regulating IRAs US District Court, N. Texas June 2 National…

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03 Jun 16
Legal Challenge To Fid Reg Is Here… Two Lawsuits Take On The DOL

Legal challenge to Fid Reg is here… Two lawsuits take on the DOL

Two lawsuits have just been filed to challenge and overturn the DOL’s Fiduciary Regulation. The first suit was filed on Wednesday June 1st, by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce (USCC), SIFMA and seven other organizations. The second was filed yesterday on June 2nd, by the National Association for Fixed Annuities. The USCC suit is very broad in scope and would essentially, if successful, gut much of the regulation. The NAFA suit is more narrowly focused on the impacts of the regulation on the sale of fixed index annuities. Will there be other suits? - The American Council of Life Insurers…

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04 Apr 16
April 17-19 Is 401(k) Summit Time In Nashville

April 17-19 is 401(k) Summit time in Nashville

Few things are sure bets in life.  But if anything is certain, it is change.  It’s inherent in most everything we do.   In fact in business, it is the one true constant. Today change in the retirement community is imminent and real.   As policy makers attempt to expand access to qualified investing and provide greater protections, we see new ideas being brought forth by the industry:  expansion of plan availability to the small employer market, the emergence of state sponsored retirement plans, the introduction of the “robo-advisor” and ever expanding passive investment strategies and products. At Fluent we are preparing…

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15 Mar 16
Sustainability Ratings – Will Your Firm Be Able To Capitalize On This New Trend?

Sustainability Ratings – Will your firm be able to capitalize on this new trend?

On March 1st Morningstar announced the release of new Sustainability Ratings for 20,000 mutual and exchange traded funds globally including equity, fixed income and possibly cash equivalent funds. These ratings represent a marketing opportunity for many advisors, asset managers and plan providers. Sustainability Ratings – Why should you care? While many advisors, asset managers and plan providers have resisted a growing trend in sociably responsible investing, the tide is starting to shift. Institutional assets under management for Environment, Social and Governance products, or ESG for short, have increased from $639 billion in 1995, to $3.7 trillion in 2012, to $6.5…

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