Mercier: “Next-Gen Fee-Based Insurance Solutions Complement Behavioral Side of RIA Practice”

In this article for IRIS, RetireOne President Ed Mercier explores the trend toward zero commission or ‘no-load’ insurance products like annuities. As robos take on more and more advisor services, many experts agree that financial behavioral coaching is one area that resists automation.

This new generation of low-cost, fiduciary-focused products help RIAs manage client behaviors so that they may stay invested, and on the right path. Growing connectivity among insurance companies and portfolio management software is also making it easier to get a complete view on these assets in the context of whole client portfolios.

A case can be made that informed investors have driven much of the demand for these products in the marketplace. Certainly, technological advances in the information age have democratized advice but, as Bob Veres points out, ideological Gen X and Millennial advisors may be due some credit as well.

We see proof of that in the trend toward independence; We’re helping a growing number of advisors transition away from FINRA oversight for a variety of reasons—dropping commissions is chief among them.
Advisors transitioning to fee-based practices are often surprised to learn how valuable these new solutions may be as we help them replace old expensive variable annuities, and bring those assets under their management.