Investment Folio For Average Joe
(by Skip Kaltenheuser, Wired News)
December 28, 2004 — An old saying claims that the rich get richer. But recent advances in online investing now allow people of modest means to tap into investment options traditionally reserved for the wealthy. more
FOLIOfn, a Vienna, Virginia, company that sped the automation of portfolio management, is forming alliances to offer consumer products with the benefits of separately managed accounts.
FOLIOfn began as an online service empowering individuals to, for all practical purposes, run their own private mutual fund by filling a ‘basket’ with up to 50 stocks or other securities.
Folio has no account minimums and allows fractional share ownership, so investors can trade in exact dollar amounts. Prices are kept low in part because Folio’s technology allows it to first try to match up buys and sells in-house, between member investors, reducing the share price spread and maximizing investor returns.
Investors can make up to 200 no-commission trades per month per basket; trades are executed at the close of two daily windows. Trades executed at other times, or exceeding the 200 maximum, cost extra. Entire baskets can be rebalanced or traded in entirety with a click.
Those wanting to try their hand running their own fund can create folios from scratch or can begin with one of Folio’s 75 ‘ready-to-go’ baskets. They include the conventional, like the best or worst 30 stocks of the prior year, and sectors such as technology, software, internet, biotech or aerospace companies with the largest market capitalizations. One basket picks companies that manufacture golf equipment and manage golf courses. A whimsical one has companies that sponsor the top 20 drivers in the NASCAR Winston Cup. Social issues, such as tobacco-free, environmentally responsible or labor-friendly criteria, underpin some baskets.
(by John Spence, Marketwatch)
October 13, 2004 — On Wednesday online investing firm FOLIOfn and the financial news Web site (TSCM:) said they have partnered to create ‘folios,’ or baskets of securities, based on research from TheStreet.com. more
And, with their first offering, you can buy a slice of TheStreet.com founder Jim Cramer’s personal portfolio with just a few mouse clicks.
It won’t be the first time FOLIOfn has introduced a basket of stocks based on the selections of a market pundit. In May the firm rolled out eight products based on the model portfolios of Reuters’ director of investment research Marc Gerstein, a former securities analyst.
Cramer, the former hedge fund manager turned financial journalist, has a subscription service on TheStreet.com called ‘Action Alerts PLUS’ that gives investors a real-time view of his personal portfolio, which is reportedly valued at $3.5 million.
“This is an efficient way to invest in TheStreet.com stock research,” said Greg Vigrass, an executive at FOLIOfn, in an interview. “It’s difficult to buy all the stocks in the Cramer portfolio individually, and it is actively managed.”
Since there are no minimum investments, investors could, for example, buy a $1,000 slice of Cramer’s portfolio and update it with a few clicks every time he makes a trade, Vigrass said.
TheStreet.com and FOLIOfn Join Forces to Offer ‘The Street.com Folios’
(source: The Street.com)
October 13, 2004 — TheStreet.com, Inc. (Nasdaq:TSCM), a leading multimedia provider of financial commentary, research, analysis and news, today announced that it has teamed with FOLIOfn, Inc., an online investing firm and financial services technology provider, to create ‘TheStreet.com Folios.’ This new approach to investing combines the financial expertise found in TheStreet.com’s premium subscription products with FOLIOfn’s patented portfolio investing system’s low-cost and fractional shares trading advantages. The program will kick-off with the launch of the ‘Action Alerts PLUS Folio,’ available at www.FOLIOfn.com/thestreet, which is designed to make investing easier and more convenient for a diverse range of self-directed investors. more
“We are very pleased that TheStreet.com has chosen our unique online investing service to empower their Action Alerts PLUS subscribers to put this complete portfolio strategy into practice,” said Steven M.H. Wallman, CEO of FOLIOfn. “FOLIOfn brings a unique accessibility and affordability to portfolio-based investing that will add real value to the Action Alerts PLUS offering.”
The Street.com and FOLIOfn Join Forces to Offer; The Street.com Folios'
(source: Securities Industry News)
October 13, 2004 — FOLIOfn’s patented, Web-based brokerage technology will empower investors to take full advantage, simply and easily, of TheStreet.com’s portfolio recommendations, actions and advice. The technology enables individuals to invest in dollar amounts with no minimum investment, and allows them to buy and sell fractions of shares. Investors can buy an entire portfolio at once, and have any dollar amount automatically distributed at the proper weights across all of the stocks in the portfolio. more
FOLIOfn also makes it quick and easy to mimic a portfolio as it is updated. When TheStreet.com updates its model, subscribers can go to FOLIOfn’s web site where they can adjust their own portfolios to mimic the model, easily placing all the necessary buy and sell orders with just a few mouse clicks. Investors also can customize their portfolios, buying or selling individual securities as they wish at any time.
from Church Executive Magazine
June 23, 2004 — With a recent bond purchase, The CRA Qualified Investment Fund (CRAIX), a fixed-income, community development mutual fund improved the financial future of the St. Vincent de Paul Society, Seattle Council. The proceeds of the bond assisted the Catholic-based charity in opening a new thrift store, expanding the mattress factory, and existing network of thrift stores, while in the process creating jobs for needy residents of King County, WA…CRAFund Advisors recently made the Fund available to individual investors and their financial advisors through distribution agreements with FOLIOfn and National Advisors Trust.
from Washington Post Business In Brief
June 14, 2004 — FOLIOfn, an online brokerage and financial software provider in Vienna, went into partnership with a Japanese brokerage to provide what it says is the first software in Japan for offering separately managed accounts. Unlike mutual funds, separately managed accounts can be customized by investors. FOLIOfn and Nikko Cordial Group, one of Asia’s largest financial services companies, will offer the service to Japanese investors. SMAs as they’re called, have traditionally been so expensive to provide in the United States that account minimums are sometimes half a million dollars or more. The American brokerage says its software can affordably accommodate accounts as modest as $25,000.
FOLIOfn In Talks To Launch SMAs In Asia, Europe
(by Jessica Toonkel, Fund Marketing Alert)
June 14, 2004 — FOLIOfn is in talks with financial services providers to introduce separately managed account programs in Asia and Europe. The Vienna, Va.-based firm is in talks with potential partners in Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Switzerland and the U.K., said Steven Wallman, CEO and founder. FOLIOfn, which is known for its technology to create customizable e-baskets that mimic mutual funds, signed a deal with Nikko Partners to create the first SMA program in Japan, and that deal has sparked interest in other parts of Asia, Wallman said.
Become a Fund Manager through FOLIOfn
(by Warren Boroson, The Daily Record)
May 30, 2004 — What you want to own is not a mad jumble of stocks—this, that and the other thing. You want to own a bunch of stocks that make beautiful music together. A full orchestra. A mélange of stock that’s diversified by industry, possibly diversified by size (large, mid-cap, small) and possibly diversified by style (growth, value, blend)…Happily there’s an online brokerage firm especially created for investors seeking nicely balanced portfolios: FOLIOfn. (The fn, if you must know, is for “financial innovation”). For $19.95 a month, or $199 a year, you can put together—in one fell swoop—a portfolio of up to 50 different stocks. Thrown in is up to 200 commission-free trades a month…Yes, it takes a little getting used to. But you can go for a dry run for 30 days at www.FOLIOfn.com.
Reuters and FOLIOfnTeam Up to Offer Reuters Select Folios
(source: Silicon Valley Biz Ink: The Future at Hand)
May 11, 2004 — Reuters Select Folios consist of eight stock selection models applied to the FOLIOfn universe of more than 4,000 tradable securities. Reuters.com will provide regular updates for the model Folios—each containing approximately 35 to 50 securities that represent various investment styles, such as ‘Favored Value Plays’ and ‘Relative Growth.’ The Reuters Select Folios will be maintained in a premium section of FOLIOfn’s retail brokerage site and also will be accessible via links from the Reuters.com site.
The New Reuters Select Folios available through Reuters.com and FOLIOfn
(source: Charlotte Observer)
May 11, 2004 — The combination of models based on Reuters.com screens with direct ownership of the individual securities in the portfolio provides tremendous advantages for investors. They have complete transparency of their holdings and costs. They can exclude specific securities or sectors from their portfolio that they may already own through other investments. They also can control when capital gains and losses are taken and, as a result, they can control their tax consequences…Financial advisors use our technology platform to administer separately managed accounts that provide these benefits for their clients. It’s a logical next step to use the same platform to empower self-directed investors to implement a strategy of this kind.
Reuters.com and FOLIOfn to Offer Reuters Select Folios
May 11, 2004 — FOLIOfn, Inc., the innovative online brokerage firm and financial services technology provider, today announced it has teamed up with Reuters.com to market Reuters Select Folios-investment portfolios that combine the benefits of Reuters.com’s stock screening expertise with FOLIOfn’s low-cost, fractional shares trading and portfolio management technology. The Folios, which are available exclusively through FOLIOfn at www.FOLIOfn.com, for the first time make it practical for all investors to cost-effectively implement complete portfolio strategies based on independent investment research.
For SMAs, The East Looks Towards The West With FOLIOfn
(by Bennet Voyles, Financial Planning)
May 10, 2004 — If you think it’s challenging to convince your clients to open a separately managed account, imagine the work Yoshishige Saigusa, the CEO of Nikko Cordial Advisors, Ltd., has cut out for him. This unit of Japan’s third-largest brokerage firm is now introducing Japan’s first separately managed account product to a target market that might not seem very promising at first glance. But with technology supplied by FOLIOfn to build its separately managed account platform, Nikko Cordial may have found a way around that particular problem. The Tysons Corner, VA, startup markets a system that allows users to buy and sell baskets of individual securities of any size. “That’s why we need FOLIOfn,” Saigusa says, “not only to control the portfolio but also the trading mechanism.”
Out With The Old
(by Frances Denmark, Bloomberg Wealth Manager)
May 2004 — FOLIOfn in Vienna, VA., enables advisers to build a new breed of separate accounts…to create a basket of stocks. Advantages over the mutual fund structure include twice-a-day, commission-free intraday trades, full transparency, and real-time pricing. These portfolios can be tax-managed because the shares are directly owned. There are no liquidity costs because the funds are not collective vehicles. Best pricing is sought through anonymous midpoint crossing using aggregation of trades and internal matching.
Wall Street Gets Personal
(by Brian O’Connell, Continental Magazine)
April 2004 — Companies, such as FOLIOfn.com…give investors the diversification advantages of mutual funds and more control over fees and taxes, as well as the added bonus of direct stock ownership…investors are able to buy and sell entire stock portfolios with just a few mouse clicks, instead of having to pick individual stocks or mutual funds.
In Brief: Japan Pact To Initiate Managed Accounts
(source: The American Banker)
March 31, 2004 — FOLIOfn Inc., an online brokerage and financial services technology firm, has announced the formation of a partnership with Nikko Cordial Corp. to create and market the first separately managed account platform in Japan. more
Nikko is to use FOLIOfn’s portfolio management and trading technology, the Vienna, Va., company said Monday. Nikko is to start its marketing effort for Premier-port, the separately managed account, in April. It estimated that the platform will accumulate at least $20 billion of assets in 10 years.
Nikko is to market Premier-port through Nikko Cordial Securities Inc. The securities subsidiary also is to establish Premier-port Advice Centers in its retail sites.
Nikko-FOLIOfn Deal A Japan First
(by Chris Kentouris, Securities Industry News)
March 29, 2004 — Japanese brokerage Nikko group has teamed up with FOLIOfn, a U.S. online brokerage and back-office software provider to offer the country’s first separately managed account (SMA) service so investors can directly own a variety of Japanese stock portfolios under a single account. more
“The deal marks our first venture abroad and we hope it will provide us with a springboard to expand in other Asia-Pacific markets such as South Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Australia,” said FOLIOfn’s chief executive and founder Steve Wallman, a former commissioner with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Indeed, FOLIOfn is already in discussions with several Asian brokerages for similar agreements.
“Japanese investors will also benefit from the ability to purchase either fractional shares or whole shares in smaller lots than the current practice of about 1000-share lots,” said Yoshi Saigusa, president of Nikko Cordial Advisors, an extension of Nikko’s asset management operation that recently received approval from Japan’s securities watchdog, the Financial Services Authority.
The FOLIOfn Web-based platform allows mass customization of client accounts, which can be linked to multiple investment models, enabling thousands of accounts to be managed by a single financial advisor. It eliminates the need for reconciliation because it uses a broker’s portfolio and brokerage account system-which in the case of Nikko Cordial Advisors, is a proprietary platform.
New Nikko Stock Service For Y2 Trln In Assets
(source: Reuters News)
March 8, 2004 — From next month, Nikko, Japan’s third-biggest brokerage, will offer the country’s first separately managed account (SMA) service that allows individual investors to directly own a variety of Japanese stock portfolios under a single account. more
The new service will be based on a trading platform developed by FOLIOfn Inc of the United States, a financial services and technology firm created by Steven Wallman, a former U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission member.
FOLIOfn has given Nikko an exclusive license for its trading platform in Japan, enabling individual investors to enjoy the benefits of diversification with relatively small investments.
It is the U.S. firm’s first licensing contract in Asia and Wallman told Reuters in the same interview that his firm was in talks to expand the franchise to other Asian countries such as Hong Kong, South Korea and Taiwan.
(by Daniel Kruger)
February 2, 2004 — Done right, Folios are cheaper than funds or broker-filled orders. For a fairly low fee to the Folio provider, you can control your own account, buying, selling, rebalancing, all without the help of a high-paid Wall Streeter. With a Folio, you can do things like ditch losing stocks for a tax advantage, a move fundholders can’t perform and broker customers must pay more for.