Fee And Commission Platform Launches

Trade PMR and Sterne Agee Financial Services are launching a new computer-based service that allows independent advisors to conduct fee-only activity and commission business on one platform and to transmit both types of information to clients in a single report.

The new Hybrid Advisor platform is designed to give registered investment advisors the freedom to serve commission and fee-based clients with no proprietary pressure either way.

Hybrid Advisor platform, which is one of the first combination programs of its kind, will offer registered investment advisors the advantage of a full-service firm, with expertise in retail and institutional brokerage; investment banking and underwriting; secondary trading of corporate, municipal and government securities, and market making in over-the-counter stocks.

The hybrid platform will enable advisors to use the back office services of Trade PMR for both types of business from one work station, says Robb W. Baldwin, president and CEO of Trade PMR.

"It should help advisors who want to move to become independent and move to fee-only, but who do not want to give up their commission business," says Stuart Bridges, director of national sales for Sterne Agee in Birmingham, Ala. "This technology will allow them to take a holistic approach and keep 100 percent of the clients they want."

Trade PMR in Gainesville, Fla., is a provider of brokerage and custody services. Sterne Agee Financial Services is a subsidiary of Stern Agee Group Inc. and is a registered broker-dealer providing investment services through independent brokers and banks.

IVA Creates New Funds
International Value Advisors LLC is launching its inaugural mutual funds, IVA Worldwide Fund and IVA International Fund. The funds are managed jointly by Charles de Vaulx and Charles de Lardemelle.

IVA International Fund will invest mostly in markets outside the U.S., while IVA Worldwide will invest globally but include U.S. investments. Both will seek long-term growth of capital by investing in a diversified range of securities and asset classes. Additional information can be found at www.ivafunds.com.

Fidelity Creates Charitable Pool
Fidelity Charitable Gift Fund is creating a Charitable Legacy Pool, a long-term investment option for charitable gift fund assets that is similar to an endowment. The strategy is designed to support long-term giving to charities while preserving the original charitable contributions that can help with a family's philanthropic activities in perpetuity.

The pool is open to new and existing donors and creates a vehicle for consistent contributions to one or more charities over a period of years. Additional information is available at www.charitablegift.org.

ICON Offers SMA Portfolios
ICON Advisers Inc., Greenwood Village, Colo., is expanding into the separately managed accounts market by offering two new portfolios, the ICON Multi-Cap U.S. Equity Portfolio and the ICON Multi-Cap International ADR Portfolio.

Both seek capital appreciation through ICON's value-based industry rotation system and will be more concentrated than the corresponding ICON mutual funds and more in line with other ICON SMAs that are targeted toward high net worth individuals and institutional accounts. More information is available at www.iconadvisers.com.

NPH Offers Streamlined Advisor Platform
National Planning Holdings Inc., an independent broker-dealer network, is launching Advisor Solutions, a Web-based portfolio management and reporting platform for financial planners who are implementing advisory models.

Advisor Solutions allows planners to create model portfolios and assign them to clients based on risk tolerance, and it is possible to manually create unique models not tied to specific asset allocation constraints. The platform also features automatic rebalancing and robust reporting tools and allows clients access to their accounts through a secure login.

Guardian Adds Annuity Rider
The Guardian Insurance & Annuity Company is adding a new guaranteed lifetime withdrawal benefit rider to its variable annuities that is designed for individuals who want to invest more for retirement to increase later income.

The optional rider offers the potential for quarterly step-ups, a 7% annual|minimum guarantee, a cumulative guarantee and
a guaranteed annual withdrawal percentage.