News, Vision & Voice for the Advisory Community


Third-party vendors vouch for TD Ameritrade's API at first general session

The days of batch downloads may be numbered

Thursday, February 3, 2011 – 1:52 PM by Brooke Southall
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Eric Clarke: We’ve struggled with the lack of a standard, but with TD we’re taking a step forward.

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Mentioned in this article:

TD Ameritrade
Asset Custodian
Top Executive: Tom Nally

Financial Planning Software
Top Executive: Bob Curtis

Redtail Technology
CRM Software
Top Executive: Brian McLaughlin

CRM Software
Top Executive: Tony Wang

Michael Wilson

Michael Wilson

February 3, 2011 — 6:08 PM

I have to concur with the vendor sentiments above.

We are still in the testing phase, but so far we believe that the API that’s been released could be a real game-changer for the hundreds of independent advisors that custody assets with TDAI & use Morningstar Office.

Importing and reconciling client data is a pretty simple task with Morningstar Office—because we have comprehensive security and index data included—but having real-time access to client data could dramatically improve a firm’s ability to focus on clients, instead of the back-office.

The ability to log into Morningstar Office and have instant access to clients accounts at TDAI, plus all of Morningstar’s research, data and reports—like the Portfolio Snapshot Report and the Client Return Summary, etc should be a huge win for advisors.

Michael Wilson
Morningstar Advisor Solutions
<a href="http://goo.gl/W6ChB" rel="nofollow">Morningstar Office</a>

Bill Winterberg

Bill Winterberg

February 3, 2011 — 7:24 PM

I share the same sentiment of Jeff Geygan. Real-time data access looks great on a feature list, but for the <a href="http://www.behaviorgap.com/secret-society-of-real-financial-planners/" rel="nofollow">secret society of REAL financial planners</a> it’s just not necessary. Clients benefit the most from life-long engagements with advisors who align financial strategies with client goals. Access to intra-day pricing does little to advance that type of relationship.

Advisors seek strong and clean integrations between software programs they feel best server their clients. That’s echoed in the desire to reduce manual entry, particularly for the same pieces of information.

If TD AMERITRADE Institutional already has a client’s name, address, phone number, account numbers, and beneficiary designations, then just get all of it via the proposed API and populate CRM, FP software, and portfolio management software with it. There should be no need to manually enter this data into 3rd party applications.

Lastly, I wouldn’t compare Veo’s API to the Apple App Store. The API is much like the <a href="http://developer.apple.com/devcenter/ios/index.action" rel="nofollow">SDK Apple provides</a> to 3rd party developers. The SDK standardizes all the function calls apps make to retrieve and process data, much like what vendors like Orion and MoneyGuidePro will do with data stored in Veo.

So Orion and MoneyGuidePro are the developers working directly with the API, and their products and services represent the “apps” available to make advisors’ lives easier.

Bill @ <a href="http://fppad.com" rel="nofollow">FPPad.com</a>

Craig Moringstar

Craig Moringstar

February 3, 2011 — 7:27 PM

For the advisors looking for the comprehensive technology package that is already built and working, at a price that can’t be beat, in addition to the choice of custodians (Fidelity, TDAmeritrade and Schwab) and exceptional services solutions, take a look at DynamicWealthAdvisors.com and give them a call.

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