I have been working on a tremendous opportunity to actively manage portfolios for 457 deferred-compensation plan participants. This includes working with the public and government sector, especially firefighters. For those individuals who are under the umbrella of the Florida Retirement System, we can offer actively managed accounts as an investment alternative within their 457 plans. One of the benefits of this option is that we can align their investment portfolios with their overall financial objectives, while also offering a risk-management component. I am very excited about growing this part of our business.
Offering this opportunity to clients can be complex. There are many regulations and guidelines that affect the various options for participants, so it is a real advantage to focus on this area. To greatly simplify, our process comes down to the following broad steps:
- Ascertain if a potential client has a 457 plan that offers the opportunity for outside money management.
- If so, undergo a comprehensive financial-planning process with the client to help establish overall goals and objectives.
- Use a sophisticated third-party methodology to assess their risk profile.
- Compare the client’s current investment allocations within their 457 plan to what our firm might suggest based on their objectives and their risk assessment. We frequently see a disconnect between the two.
- Educate the client about the benefits of an actively managed investment approach and how this might be of value in helping them meet their overall financial-planning objectives.
- If the client agrees that this approach makes sense, help guide them through the necessary steps and paperwork to effect a change in their investment selection options.
- Develop portfolio recommendations based on their needs.
- Open the account, transfer funds, and implement the investment recommendations.
As with any other client, we will advise in a manner that is in the client’s most suitable interests. We will also monitor their portfolio progress over time and conduct planning and portfolio review sessions. If their life circumstances change or we believe adjustments need to be made, we have the ability to make portfolio adjustments in a timely and efficient manner.
Disclosure: Securities and investment advisory services are offered solely through Ameritas Investment Corp. (AIC). Member FINRA/SIPC. AIC and Proactive Advisor Magazine are not affiliated. Additional products and services may be available through Alex Zourides or Alex Zourides, CFP, Inc. that are not offered through AIC. Before investing, carefully consider the investment objectives, risks, limitations, charges and expenses of the product and its underlying investment options. Information can be found in product and investment prospectuses. Please read carefully before investing. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Diversification and asset allocation do not guarantee positive results. Loss, including loss of principal may result. Representatives of AIC do not provide tax or legal advice. Please consult your tax advisor or attorney regarding your situation.
Editor’s note: As of this update (January 9, 2018), Mr. Zourides’ broker-dealer is Equity Services, Inc.
Photography by Bill Wadman