FutureTrade, a leading independent provider of electronic equity and option execution services, and Cogent Consulting LLC today announced the formation of a strategic partnership to provide Cogent's industry leading ResearchTrak broker review, voting and commission management system to FutureTrade's hedge fund, institution and investment adviser clients.
Through the agreement, an integrated version of ResearchTrak is being offered on the FutureTrade multi-broker electronic trading platform, making it fast, easy and inexpensive for hedge funds, institutions and investment advisers to manage their "soft dollar" allocations for brokerage and research services and comply with new SEC registration rules for hedge funds under the Investment Advisers Act of 1940 and pending guidelines regarding soft dollar commissions under Section 28(e) of the Exchange Act.
ResearchTrak-FT provides all the standard features that have proven effective for money managers who have been using standalone versions of ResearchTrak and the more specialized HedgeTrak, plus new features only available through the integration with FutureTrade. Adding to FutureTrade's direct market access algorithmic and multi-broker execution management capabilities, ResearchTrak-FT:
- Enables up to 10 users to vote on eight basic categories in order to document, justify and determine soft dollar commission allocations on a consistent basis to sell-side brokerage firms, assisting them in complying with new SEC regulations.
- Provides side-by-side comparison of commission payments calculated by the FutureTrade platform versus planned allocations, and also allows buyside firms to compare the results of their broker reviews to those of their peers, anonymously and in aggregate.
- Allows users to set and track soft dollar commission targets, and generate and transmit sell-side broker performance reports.
- Can be further expanded and customized by Cogent Consulting as the client grows or to accommodate specific hedge fund or money manager needs.
Jim Kwiatkowski, Executive Vice President, Sales and Marketing of FutureTrade, said, "As our clients increasingly rely on us to provide them with value-added brokerage and research services, they have asked for an efficient, easy-to-use technology based solution that would assist them in complying with all the new SEC regulations, without having to add the overhead of purchasing or developing systems internally. Our partnership with Cogent allows us to respond to these requests with an integrated best-of-breed solution for broker review, voting and commission management."
"We are very excited to partner with an industry leader in serving hedge funds," said Robin Hodgkins, President and CEO of Cogent Consulting. "Based on the experience of our customers to date, ResearchTrak-FT will help FutureTrade clients in managing their commission allocations on a compliant basis, and generate an important increase in productivity as funds can more precisely determine where they are getting the best "bang for the buck" for the commissions they spend for proprietary and third party research services. We are sensitive to the fact that even smaller asset managers have many of the same compliance and regulatory requirements as the large ones. For the first time, they will now have affordable access to Cogent's top commercial solution."