In the U.S., Vanguard wants to become a major player in the advisory business by launching a service called the Personal Advisor Services program.
As reported by Financial Times, “the company brought in more money in 2014 than any asset management group ever, and chief executive Bill McNabb is [going to] embark on an even more ambitious goal for 2015: revolutionizing the market for giving financial advice.”
Further, says FT, Vanguard plans to help investors “at a fraction of the cost of the average financial advisor.”
However, Vanguard won’t make the same move in Canada. Spokesperson David Hoffman told Advisor.ca, “Our focus in Canada is on providing investments to Canadian investors via financial advisors. The [Personal Advisor Services program] is not something we are bringing to Canada.”
In the U.S., he explains, the company plans to offer that program more broadly in 2015. Currently, it’s being piloted with a small group of clients.
Investors will be offered personalized financial plans, as well as “an ongoing relationship with a Vanguard advisor who will monitor [their] investment portfolios, rebalance as necessary, recommend adjustments due to changes in circumstances or goals, and respond to ongoing questions and concerns.”
That said, he notes, the company’s not aiming to compete with financial advisors. “The advice services offered by Vanguard directly to investors currently differ, and will continue to differ, in a number of ways from those offered by the financial advisors.”
McNabb earlier discussed the development of the program in June 2014, during a speech at Consumer Reports’ headquarters, reports consumerreports.org. At that time, says the outlet, he revealed the program would be offered to “retail customers [in the U.S.] for 0.3% annually, or $3 for every $1,000 invested. Customers with as little as $100,000 in investments would be eligible.”
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