Two things currently stand in the way of most MFDA dealing representatives recommending ETFs to their clients and both could soon be a thing of the past.
“I would love to be able to offer ETFs in the MFDA world,” Ryan Colwell, an MFDA advisor in Georgetown, Ont., told WP. “It would allow access more products and give me more tools to help deal with fee pressure.”
That desire had Colwell and many other MFDA advisors contemplating a move to IIROC as a way of accessing ETF sales, but the MFDA appears to now be moving to remove two hurdles in the way of that ambition. Colwell says he's taken notice of developments that would solve two key problems.
The first problem faced by MFDA dealing representatives is there isn’t a platform on which to buy and sell ETFs at the moment. The MFDA is currently testing a vendor’s software for a potential solution and another software vendor is working on a solution.
The second problem, however, is one whose solution is still some way’s out.
Last week the MFDA put out a request for comments from those in the industry about ETF proficiency standards. It’s clear to the SRO and its members that work still needs to be done before dealing reps across the board are able to educate and inform clients on these funds.
“There is already a [MFDA] member offering ETFs,” commented the MFDA earlier this year. “Regardless of whether other firms may also want to trade in ETFs, we felt it was prudent to address a potential proficiency gap.”
Once done advisors such as Ryan Colwell will be able to offer clients ETFs and that’s a good thing.