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In the News

Corporate Insight is frequently in the news, whether to announce and discuss our published research or to offer our views on topics within our areas of expertise. Scroll down this page to read the latest articles in which we’ve appeared, and use our News Archive to find previous items.
Betterment for advisers on its way as firm adds trust, tax-loss harvesting products PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 23 June 2014 11:13

By Joyce Hanson

Grant Easterbrook, a senior analyst at market research firm Corporate Insight, said Betterment's larger online investment competitor Wealthfront already offers tax-loss harvesting for customers with a minimum of $100,000 in assets on the platform.

“One of the great things about these online services is their low minimums,” Mr. Easterbrook said. “A Merrill Lynch adviser isn't going to work with you unless you have half a million dollars.”

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The Digital Frontier: A Crucial Element in Engaging Participants PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 11 June 2014 08:05
By: Michael Ellison

In the past, plan sponsors placed most of their attention on plan level details, including investment options, fees and other features. Now, sponsors are growing more concerned about participant engagement as it pertains to their own retirement planning. But, how does one achieve increased engagement? It is one thing to hold live orientations during open enrollment, but holding them often enough that they actually drive engagement can be cost prohibitive and negatively impact productivity within the workplace.

Enter the digital participant experience. There should be little argument that digital and the internet have remade the broader financial industry over the past decade. People have become comfortable handling investments, moving money and paying bills online. PLANSPONSOR magazine’s recent participant survey showed 24% rely on the plan website as their primary source of information when analyzing investments—more than three times those who said employer workshops/meetings were their primary source (see “Research: Smarter Than We Thought”)! Corporate Insight’s own surveys have shown Millennials in particular have a strong propensity towards using the digital channel and this group will be plan sponsors’ major concern in the years to come.

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Biggest Thing Since ETFs? PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 04 June 2014 14:55
Financial Advisor
By Jeff Schlegel

As fresh as Motif Investing’s product appears, it’s not totally groundbreaking. Folio Investing got there first and now offers more than 100 ready-to-go customizable portfolios ranging from traditional allocation themes to tactical strategies such as analyst upgrades; military procurement; and wine, beer and spirits. The unlimited plan is $29 a month or $290 annually, while the basic plan is pay-as-you-go at a $4 commission per security transaction. Folio portfolios can hold as many as 100 securities.

“Motif is disruptive, but it fits into the broader trend of downward pressure on commission costs,” says Grant Easterbrook, an analyst at Corporate Insight, a New York City-based financial services research company.

And down the road, Easterbrook posits that online discount brokers such as E*Trade, Scottrade and TD Ameritrade that don’t have their own fund families (unlike rivals Fidelity and Charles Schwab) could someday become competitors to Motif and Folio. “It’s possible to imagine them rolling out a similar service of customizable funds,” he says.

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Best of the Online Investment Advisers PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 03 June 2014 12:08
By Nellie Huang

Getting good investment advice doesn't require millions in the bank anymore. These days, an army of online advisers will offer low-cost solutions to the age-old question: How do I invest my money? Many will even do the trade for you, rebalance your portfolio periodically and suggest ways to minimize your taxes, too.

Some firms are more line financial planner; others pick investments for you. With help from Grant Easterbrook, an analyst for the research firm Corporate Insight, we focused on seven firms that offer specific investment advice online.

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Corporate Insight: Open Online Experience Improves Participant Engagement PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 28 May 2014 12:23

By Michael Paterakis

Online and mobile tools can help plan sponsors better fulfill their fiduciary duty and motivate participants to be more active with their investment options, a new study from Corporate Insight has found.

The report, Engaging Participants: Best Practices for Plan Sponsors, suggested participant engagement can be vastly improved if key data points are clearly presented.

“Embedding such critical information for participants is very important,” Drew Maresca, senior analyst at Corporate Insight, told MMI. “Current contributions and retirement income projections should be right there, at the top in the homepage.”

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6 Ways to Help an Adult Child Without Going Broke PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 28 May 2014 12:21
next ave
By Richard Eisenberg

As the recent report by the Corporate Insight financial services consulting firm — The Millennial Shift: Financial Services and the Digital Generation— put it: “With a high debt burden and low income stream, Millennials need help balancing their budgets, managing their credit card and education debt, and planning for retirement and other goals.”
I can relate. My two sons in their 20s are trying their best to make it on their own, and it hasn’t been easy for them. My wife and I are no longer covering their rent or their daily living expenses, with one exception: their cell phone bills. (As a friend of mine who also has two twenty-something sons just told me, somewhat hyperbolically: "Everyone pays their kids’ cell phone bills.")

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