Case Study: A Betterment Advisor analyzes Dimensional Funds

The challenge for the emerging advisor

The advisor with $100M+ in AUM is a standalone advisor/owner based in the Northeast. His clients are mostly mass affluent with some business owners and corporate executives. His practice is part of the Betterment for Advisors program and he has access to all major funds including BlackRock, DFA,…etc. He has been moderately satisfied with the choices available in their investment program but hasn’t been successful in effectively assessing the relative performance including the underlying portfolio statistics.

As a standalone advisor, he must balance the daily demands of existing clients and prospects while keeping up with technology offerings, market moves and the nuances of the investments available to him via Betterment. When Betterment announced they were adding DFA funds to their line-up, it could be a good opportunity for his clients, However it added over a week of additional research to an already stretched schedule for him to determine how these new funds were related to the 80 ETFs already available to him.

Universe Filters to identify DFA peer groups

The Portformer Universe Filters have been a powerful feature that has previously been used to help advisors discover Socially Responsible alternatives to their existing funds. In this case we can see how specific DFA funds compare and contrast to the growing list of Betterment Model Portfolios.

In the 7 minute video above, we walk this advisor through the steps to compare the new universe of Dimensional Funds with specific Betterment Models and the approved list.

  1. View the Universe List (0:22)
  2. Create a Portfolio of DFA Funds (1:06)
  3. Analyze a specific DFA fund against all Betterment Approved ETFs (3:01)
  4. Quickly launch from Portformer into Morningstar to augment the analysis (3:50)
  5. See how the DFA fund fits into an existing Taxable Model Portfolio (5:30)

These steps above allow advisors to quickly wrap their head around any fund-lineup and identify the true peer groups for a given fund. Emerging managers enjoyed the speed of the filtering features and unbiased Portformer Replacement Scores to help the make higher conviction fund decisions.

Portformer Discovery Tool showing Universe Filter Dropdown

Existing Portformer clients and all of the advisors on our free trial can create and edit their universes by visiting:

John DiBenedetto

Sales | Business Development | Customer Success


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