LOS ANGELES, April 26, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Cetera Financial Group® ("Cetera"), a leading network of independent broker-dealer firms, today announced the launch of DOL DynamIQs™, a comprehensive suite of integrated tools and resources designed to enable financial advisors to prepare for the Department of Labor's recently released fiduciary rule, and thrive in the new regulatory environment it has created.
The recently finalized DOL rule expands the definition of 'fiduciary' under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), which now applies to all financial advisors who work with qualified retirement accounts and IRAs. Cetera supports the rule's stated goal of putting clients' best interests first, and has designed the DOL DynamIQs platform specifically to help the network's advisors understand how the sweeping new rule may impact their businesses. The platform also helps advisors gauge their readiness to comply and develop a game plan to successfully achieve DOL compliance. Effective immediately, DOL DynamIQs is being rolled out to all advisors across the Cetera network at no additional cost.
The tools provided within the DOL DynamIQs program are fully integrated with Cetera's Pentameter® practice management platform; its Connect2Clients® advisor marketing communications support platform; and its "90 in 90" advisor transitions platform, each of which are industry award winning turnkey resources.
Adam Antoniades, President of Cetera Financial Group, said, "Cetera and its advisors have always emphasized the importance of putting clients' best interests first, and we support efforts to further this crucial goal. The Department of Labor's new regulatory framework is expected to significantly impact the independent advisor business model and will undoubtedly result in substantial changes in compliance and business processes. Financial advisors who work with retirement accounts on any level need to know that their broker-dealer has the in-house expertise and resources to help them identify and cope with the potential impact to their businesses. We place the highest priority on ensuring total alignment between the interests of advisors and their clients, and the platform we have announced today will enable our advisors to adapt smoothly to this important regulatory shift. With DOL DynamIQs, Cetera Financial Group is once again demonstrating our ability to leverage our industry-leading scale, resources and thought leadership to provide our advisors with the tools and support they need to face significant regulatory and other changes with confidence."
A key component of the new DOL DynamIQs platform will be iQuantify, a diagnostic tool that enables advisors to assess their readiness for the rule and helps them map out an actionable game plan to achieve compliance with minimal disruption to their practices. The introduction of iQuantify will follow a pilot program encompassing Cetera financial advisors across the country. In addition to iQuantify, DOL DynamIQs provides advisors with:
- an online assessment tool that allows advisors to quickly identify the assets and accounts in their practices that may be impacted by the DOL's new rule
- a quantitative tool aimed at providing advisors with an in depth analysis of their business and a transition plan for client portfolios not in compliance with the DOL fiduciary rule
- a dedicated consulting service that will provide Cetera advisors with ongoing access to specialists who can help them transition client assets to DOL-compliant solutions; and
- in-depth analysis of the regulation and its implications, combined with extensive educational materials and webcasts detailing the impacts of the rule, how advisors can successfully adapt, and best practices for leveraging Cetera's industry-leading resources.
Mr. Antoniades said, "Putting the best interests of clients first in order to help them pursue their long-term financial aspirations is a fundamental part of our business. Up until now, the industry as a whole had been impacted by a lack of clarity on what the DOL fiduciary rule would be and the resultant changes it would have on advisors and their practices. With DOL DynamIQs, Cetera is addressing the requirements and impacts of this new rule head-on. The new tools and services we have announced today will help our advisors quantify the potential effects of the DOL's rule on their practices. It will allow them to respond to these changes with confidence by developing and implementing step-by-step plans to achieve compliance with minimal disruption to their businesses, helping them successfully make the transition to the post-DOL environment while maintaining their unwavering focus on client service and helping clients progress toward their financial goals."
Mr. Antoniades concluded, "Cetera plans to take the lessons we learn through this regulatory transition and apply them towards the development of a range of new technology and service platforms. We hope this will turn widespread industry challenges on their head – challenges such as succession planning and marketing to the next generation of clients – and will help our advisors surmount these obstacles in ways that position them for continued success in the future."
About Cetera Financial Group
Cetera Financial Group is a leading network of independent retail broker-dealers empowering the delivery of objective financial advice to investors across the country through trusted financial advisors and financial institutions. The network is comprised of ten firms - four Cetera-branded firms (Cetera Advisors, Cetera Advisor Networks, Cetera Investment Services, marketed as Cetera Financial Institutions, and Cetera Financial Specialists) along with First Allied Securities, Investors Capital Corporation, Legend Equities Corporation, Summit Brokerage, VSR Financial Services and Girard Securities.
Cetera Financial Group is the second largest independent financial advisor network in the nation by number of advisors, as well as a leading provider of retail services to the investment programs of banks and credit unions. Cetera Financial Group delivers award-winning wealth management and advisory platforms, comprehensive broker-dealer and registered investment adviser services, and innovative technology to over 9,000 independent financial professionals and over 500 financial institutions nationwide. Through its distinct firms, Cetera Financial Group offers the benefits of a large, established broker-dealer and registered investment adviser, while serving independent and institutions-based financial advisors in a way that is customized to their needs and aspirations. Cetera Financial Group is committed to helping advisors grow their businesses and strengthen their relationships with clients. For more information, visit www.ceterafinancialgroup.com.
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SOURCE Cetera Financial Group