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Schwab Sees Online Trading Upgrade for Advisors in 3Q 2013

Plans to upgrade Web-based trading capabilities on Schwab Advisor Services’ platform are proceding slowly. The new system is being beta tested by a group of advisors, but don’t look for a launch until the third quarter of next year, says trading platforms Director Kevin Kraus.

Kraus and Adam Moseley, Schwab’s lead tech consultant, discussed various upgrades during an online program today. The planned online trading platform was designed with advisor input, Kraus said. Among other things, it aims to allow advisors to make trades seamlessly across accounts, and increase or decrease positions by certain percentages.

The new system will also redesign order entry to include order status and balance summaries. Schwab’s platform currently handles more than 500,000 trades of equities and ETFs each month, and more than 1 million mutual fund trades. About 1,700 advisors use the platform each day.

Kraus said Schwab is using advisor feedback to make adjustments in the system as it goes along. About a third of the development has been rolled out in beta so far.

On the mobile device front, Moseley said Schwab’s iPad app should be out around the end of this year. Schwab launched its iPhone app two months ago. He said he is also seeing greater interest and acceptance among advisors of cloud-based Web services, as opposed to on-premises servers.

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