MPI Launches Target-Date Radar, A Transformative Tool For TDF Selection

Interactive solution designed for fiduciaries seeking to match DC plan demographics, behaviors and preferences with appropriate target-date fund families

October 13, 2016

Summit, NJ/London/Tokyo (Oct. 13, 2016) ― Markov Processes International (MPI), a leading provider of investment research, technology, analytics and indices for the global investment management industry, today announced the release of Target-Date Radar, its newest software application to meet the needs of investment professionals that advise Defined Contribution (DC) plans.

MPI has built an interactive search and selection tool designed for fiduciaries seeking to match DC plan demographics, behaviors and preferences with appropriate target-date fund (“TDF”) families. This tool employs MPI’s hallmarks: insightful quantitative analysis, unique visualization techniques to better contrast products and best-in-class reporting. The MPI TDF analysis process, which was designed to help advisors address fiduciary guidance from the U.S. Department of Labor, also includes detailed reporting features for qualitative, quantitative, and suitability comparisons. Target-Date Radar provides plan advisors with an established, repeatable methodology and a documentable process for assessing, selecting and monitoring TDFs.

MPI’s innovative approach to the analysis of TDF glide paths, as well as its unique approach to assessing the needs and preferences of a DC plan, was designed to transform the way that these products are selected, creating a new standard for the industry. By combining holdings-based data with the power of its patented Dynamic Style Analysis (“DSA”) modeling, MPI is able to look beyond the “total equity exposure” of the glide path to uncover exposures that manage longevity, volatility, and inflationary risks.

This unique approach also allows users of the tool to dial-in their risk management preferences across three critical retirement zones–before, near, and in retirement–to shape their ideal glide path. Additionally, MPI’s independent ownership ensures that the Target-Date Radar plan questionnaire and resulting custom TDF product recommendations are based solely on unbiased, objective analysis that matches the attributes of a plan to a subset of the most appropriate TDF families–no specific fund families are given preferential treatment.

“Although there are other TDF decision tools on the market, most of these come from asset management firms or wealth management firms that have an interest in directing plan sponsors to a particular fund family. These tools, not surprisingly, are built to emphasize the ideas that are important to that particular asset manager. As it stands, the market desperately needs unbiased, analytics-based TDF guidance that helps DC plans identify the right products for their participants, as well as why a particular offering might be a poor fit,” said Chas Mansfield, CIO of Compass Financial Partners. “MPI’s Target-Date Radar incorporates the methods and approach that I have found to be most effective in working with DC plans. This tool has no hidden agenda, empowering the advisor, the plan and the participants.”

MPI’s Target-Date Radar application is seamlessly integrated with MPI Stylus Web, a complete DC reporting and analysis toolkit. Dennis Baldi, EVP and Head of Advisor Solutions for MPI, added, “Most TDF decision tools fall short in their ability to analyze the actual glide path shape, which many consider to be the primary driver of long-term investment outcomes. Our Target-Date Radar solution is able to go beyond the broad strategic glide path view to isolate specific retirement risk considerations that are too often unaddressed.”

MPI has been a leading provider of custom plan analysis and reporting solutions to DC-focused firms for over 10 years, and MPI’s Target-Date Radar was designed in conjunction with these clients. The product reflects MPI’s focus on delivering cutting-edge, institutional analysis in the most accessible and useful manner. Mike Chidlovsky, EVP and Head of Enterprise Solutions for MPI, remarked that, “We always learn from our clients, especially when it comes to workflow and how they interact with their own clients, and they are the ones that encouraged us to build this tool. We work with some of the most sophisticated firms in the industry and Target-Date Radar was designed to meet their high expectations.”


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