The American College and the IPA Introduce E-Learning Course for Financial Advisors and Financial Wholesalers

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The IPA and The American College have introduced a new continuing education course for financial advisors and financial wholesalers, designed to expand their understanding of direct investments.

Stephen D. Tarr, CLU, ChFC, CAP, CASL, MSM, Senior Vice President at The American College

This introductory e-learning course, available now at www.ipa.com, will help advisors and wholesalers better understand the different direct investments available today and assess their suitability for investors

The Investment Program Association (IPA), the trade association for the direct investment industry, and The American College, the nation’s premier educational resource for financial advisors, have introduced the first in a planned series of e-learning continuing education courses for financial advisors and financial wholesalers, designed to expand their understanding of direct investments.

“This introductory e-learning course, available now at http://www.ipa.com, will help advisors and wholesalers better understand the different direct investments available today and assess their suitability for investors,” explained Daniel Courtney, chairman of the IPA’s Education Committee and senior vice president, Resource Real Estate, Inc.

Designed by The American College, the IPA’s educational partner, the introductory course will include eight modules consisting of:

  •     Introduction – Direct Investments
  •     Real Estate Investment Trusts: Tradable REITs
  •     Non-Traded Real Estate Investment Trusts
  •     Equipment Lease and Finance Funds
  •     Limited Partnerships in Oil and Gas
  •     Managed Futures Funds
  •     Private Equity Funds
  •     Ethics and Codes of Conduct

“Recent studies have documented the value of direct investments in a diversified portfolio,” Courtney noted. “For example, a 2009 study by Dutch economists Niels Bekkers, Ronald Doeswijk, and Trevin Lam found that adding direct investments such as real estate to an already diversified portfolio ‘deliver[s] the most efficiency-improving value for investors.’ The study also found that relatively small allocations of these investments can produce ‘an economically significant extra return.’”

“Financial advisors who are familiar with direct investments recognize the vital role they can play in diversifying a portfolio and potentially increasing return while reducing volatility,” Courtney noted. “But for many advisors, direct investments remain unfamiliar, if not unknown. This e-learning course and others the IPA and The American College plan to introduce are designed to address that information and knowledge gap.”

“The American College is pleased to join with the Investment Program Association. Working together, we will bring state-of-the-art investment education courses to members of the direct investment industry and enhance the quality of service delivered by financial advisors to consumers,” said Stephen D. Tarr, Senior Vice President, The American College. "Our non-profit organization is dedicated to enhancing the professionalism of today’s financial advisor. Education is the best and most effective way to make that a reality.”

The online training program is available 24/7, allowing financial advisors and financial wholesalers to work at their own pace and convenience. Advisors will receive two continuing education credits toward the CFP® designation for the course, which typically requires two to three hours to complete. The cost is $20.

At some point in the future, the IPA and The American College may work together on new educational offerings. The two organizations are discussing the possibility of working together and creating a formal industry designation denoting expertise in direct investments.

“The e-learning course underscores the IPA’s commitment to education,” Courtney added, noting that, “Education is one of the cornerstones of the IPA’s philosophy. As the investment marketplace becomes more complex, the advisor’s need for quality direct investment information and education is growing exponentially. Better education for advisors and product wholesalers ultimately benefits retail investors - the shared customers of the advisors and product sponsors - resulting in a better experience for all parties.”

For additional information on this course or to enroll in it, contact tmesterharm@ipa.com or visit our website at
http://www.ipa.com.

The American College is the nation’s largest non-profit educational institution devoted to financial services. Holding the highest level of academic accreditation, The College has served as a valued business partner to banks, brokerage firms, insurance companies and others for over 83 years. The American College’s faculty represents some of the financial services industry’s foremost thought leaders. For more information, visit TheAmericanCollege.edu

The Investment Program Association (IPA) was formed in 1985 to provide effective national leadership for the direct investment industry. Over the years, the IPA has successfully championed the growth of direct investment products, which have increased in popularity with financial professionals and investors alike. Today, the IPA is the leading advocate for the inclusion of direct investments in a diversified investment portfolio. The mission of the IPA is advocating direct investments through education. For more information please visit http://www.ipa.com.

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