Small-Cap Mutual Funds Debut Amid Trump Bump
2017 could be the year for small caps, thus advisors might keep two new mutual funds in mind.

The Ivy IG International Small Cap Fund was launched by Ivy Investment Management Co. to seek companies with market capitalizations of less than $10 billion outside North America.

“Interest in international small caps has been driven by a combination of outperformance, attractive valuations and innovation among smaller companies,” said Martin Fahey, co-manager of the fund. “We believe successful small-cap investing requires the identification of undervalued, underappreciated companies with growth potential, taking into account competitive advantages.”

The new fund is subadvised by IG International Management, a Dublin, Ireland-based firm.

Denver-based 361 Capital, meanwhile, is launching a U.S. Small Cap Equity fund, under the ticker ASFZX. This fund is designed for investors who want to boost returns by tilting toward domestic small-cap stocks.

The fund uses a quantitative process to select investments by taking advantage of earnings estimate revisions by analysts. The strategy was launched nine years ago, but was only available via institutional accounts.

“This is an exciting opportunity for us to offer another distinctive investment strategy that investors are actively seeking,” said Tom Florence, CEO of 361 Capital. “Clearly, there is a shortage of quality small-cap mutual funds still open in the marketplace today, and we are pleased to be able to fill that void.”

MFS Thinks Long With New Target Date Fund
MFS Investment Management has launched a new target-date fund for workers with more than 40 years ahead of them until retirement.

The MFS Lifetime 2060 Fund is a fund of funds that invests nearly all of its assets in other MFS mutual funds, with an objective of high total returns.

From inception, the fund will allocate most of its assets to U.S. and international stock funds, but will decrease its stock exposure while increasing fixed-income exposures as it nears its target date.

By 2060, the fund will have an asset allocation aligned with that of the MFS Lifetime Income Fund.

Mercury Launches Digital Alternative Platform
Mercury Capital Advisors Group has launched a digital platform for alternative investments.

Mercury iFunds offers a curated lineup of institutional-quality alternative investments across the liquidity spectrum, using a digital, intuitive and easy-to-use platform.

Mercury has relationships with more than 2,500 of the world’s largest investing institutions, including sovereign wealth funds, pension funds, insurance companies and endowments. For the first time, Mercury will offer advisors, family offices and RIAs transparent, institutional pricing in alternatives across 18 different investment categories.

Through Mercury iFunds, investors will be able to access private funds with a minimum subscription of $100,000.

Advisor Group Switches Branding to Let Advisors Shine
Advisor Group, a network of independent advisory firms, has rolled out a new brand strategy.

The brand will focus on the impact advisors have on clients’ lives. The Advisor Group has adopted a new tagline, “In your corner,” as well as a new logo.

The Advisor Group will also introduce advertisements highlighting “Moments” resulting from strong financial planning. The advertisements will include real photos and encourage a “Share Your Moments” social campaign to collect additional photos from employees, advisors and clients.

The network will also launch a website using neutral colors to allow its broker-dealer subsidiaries—SagePoint Financial, FSC Securities Corporation, Woodbury Financial and Royal Alliance—to stand out.

Veritable, Moelis Introduce Venture-Style Alts Platform
Veritable announced a partnership with New York-based Moelis Asset Management to launch Archean Capital Partners, a private investment platform directed toward providing new portfolio managers with initial capital and infrastructure.

Through Archean, Veritable and Moelis will seek capital for single-manager, special-purpose vehicles that invest in selected newly launched private funds across a broad range of strategies, including buyout, turnaround/restructuring, growth, credit opportunities, infrastructure and real estate.

The firms have already established the first Archean SPV, a single-manager SPV with $100 million of capital committed by Veritable clients and other individuals, which is already in the process of investing with its first candidate in the private funds industry.

Advicent, Janney Team Up for Fiduciary Readiness
Advicent has linked with Janney Montgomery Scott to implement fiduciary compliance efforts.

Janney will implement Advicent’s NaviPlan financial planning software into its work flow with prospects and clients, incorporating the software’s online access, planning tools and outputs into its client site.

In addition, Janney plans to upgrade its proprietary Retirement Income Evaluator tool through Advicent’s software, helping advisors execute long-term retirement strategies with updated reports, calculations and cash-flow projections based on NaviPlan’s data-driven analysis.