Fidelity Introduces Yield Investigator Calculator
Fidelity’s new interactive calculator—The Yield Investigator—is intended to help financial advisors understand the impact of rising rates on a fixed-income portfolio.

The calculator is designed to give advisors the ability to research different bond sectors. Users input hypothetical data such as yield, spread, time horizons and targeted risk and return levels to test how a sector or a hypothetical bond portfolio may perform in different market conditions.
Advisors can adjust for a range of scenarios using easy-to-populate screens and sliding scales indicating potential yield, percent return, duration and volatility.

They can explore how time horizons may impact fixed-income asset classes, the relationship between return and duration and how portfolio composition can impact a fixed-income portfolio.

The Yield Investigator includes settings that enable users to modify the currency translation effect, as well as potential default and recovery rates. It also lets advisors fine-tune sector allocations by entering specific numbers in the percentage allocation boxes.

 “Many financial advisors are asking ‘What do I do with my fixed-income portfolio if interest rates rise?’” said Robert Litle, senior vice president, Fidelity Financial Advisor Solutions. “This potential rising interest rate environment represents a new reality for many advisors, who have seen rates trending downward for years. Financial advisors will have to think differently about a diversified portfolio, and the Fidelity Yield Investigator will help to simplify many of the complex calculations inherent in those portfolio construction decisions.”

LPL Financial Enhances Mobile App
LPL Financial has enhanced its mobile app design to give advisors greater real-time insight into market events and an improved ability to interact directly with clients. New features include real-time financial headlines from Thomson Reuters; daily commentary from members of the LPL Financial Research team, including YouTube videos; a redesigned user interface with a simpler look and feel; continuous Twitter updates; information-sharing capability via e-mail, direct message, Twitter or Facebook; and the ability to answer questions and engage with clients via a secure message system.

Retirement Guidebook Available To Advisors
GDC Research and Practical Perspectives have released a guidebook designed to offer advisors insights on how to best serve clients nearing and in retirement.

 “The guidebook is not a selling system, nor does it tell advisors how they should manage portfolios for retirement income clients, but instead focuses on best practices and the processes advisors should follow when building a retirement income practice,” says Howard Schneider, president of Practical Perspectives and co-author.

Putnam Offers Peer Comparison Feature
Putnam Investments is adding a “How Do I Compare” feature to its 401(k) Lifetime Income Analysis Tool that allows plan participants the ability to compare their retirement saving progress with their peer group. Defined contribution plan participants can measure both their savings rate and potential income replacement in retirement based on several criteria, including age, salary and gender.

“Research shows that social comparisons can have a powerful effect on changing behavior,” said Edmund F. Murphy III, head of Defined Contribution, Putnam Investments. “We believe this concept has tremendous application in the retirement savings space to potentially help raise contribution rates.”

Gemini Adds PROactive To Platform
Gemini Fund Services has integrated Broadridge Financial’s PROactive Reconciliation solution into its platform. Broadridge is a provider of investor communications and technology-driven solutions for broker-dealers, banks, mutual funds and corporate issuers globally.

 PROactive Reconciliation will enable Gemini to analyze trading and other transaction data while automating the calculation of differences in pricing data and identifying any anomalies.

“This reconciliation tool will save us significant time and processing costs by automating trading and data entry operations from beginning to end across our organization,” said Andrew Rogers, chief executive officer of Gemini.

AdvisorShares Launches Sage Core Reserves ETF
AdvisorShares has launched a new actively managed ETF, the Sage Core Reserves ETF (HOLD). Sub-advised by Austin, Texas-based asset manager Sage Advisory Services, the investment objective of HOLD is to preserve capital while maximizing income. Sage seeks to achieve this objective by investing in a broad range of fixed-income securities and U.S. dollar-denominated investment-grade debt securities, with an average duration of less than one year.