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DOL Fiduciary News: February 8, 2017

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Elizabeth Warren: Save Fiduciary Rule Because Wall Street Wants It

Financial Advisor; February 7, 2017

Senator Elizabeth Warren appealed to the pro-business bent of the Trump Administration Tuesday to save the fiduciary rule.

The Massachusetts Democrat’s message: keep the best-interest standard because Wall Street wants it.

J.P. Morgan, Prudential, BlackRock and a host of other large financial firms are supporting the rule because they know it will increase confidence of the public in financial advisors and bring more investors to the table, the liberal scion claimed.

DOJ, DOL considering dropping defense of fiduciary rule; February 7, 2017

The long-awaited ruling from a Texas federal court on the legality of the Labor Department’s fiduciary rule may be relegated to the dustbin of history before anyone reads the decision.

According to Erin Sweeney, a Washington, D.C.-based attorney with Miller & Chevalier, the Departments of Justice and Labor intend to stop defending the case and are in settlement discussions with plaintiffs and the court.

Judge Barbara Lynn, the chief U.S. district judge for the Northern District of Texas, issued a statement last week saying her decision would be released no later than Friday, February 10.

No turning back the clock on fiduciary [company responses]

Financial Planning; February 07 2017, 5:23pm EST

Is it too late to overturn the fiduciary rule?

That question might seem far-fetched in the wake of President Trump's memorandum, instructing the Department of Labor to review the regulation once again with an eye toward killing it or aggressively scaling it back.

But the environment has changed over the past year. Ameriprise spent tens of millions of dollars and assigned more than 500 people to oversee compliance. Betterment and Merrill Lynch invested in advertising campaigns to broadcast their embrace of it. The regulation even penetrated pop culture; comedian John Oliver dedicated an episode of his weekly HBO show last year to its benefits.

New Fidelity Research Reveals Advisors Remained Focused on Implementing DOL Fiduciary Rule 

February 07, 2017 10:30 AM EST

BOSTON -- (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Regulatory and political developments remained top-of-mind for financial advisors in Q4 2016, according to the latest Fidelity®Advisor Investment Pulse survey. Advisors continued to keep their eye on the Department of Labor’s (DOL) fiduciary rule on investment advice as well as the election results, with more than 32 percent surveyed citing topics relating to government and economy as areas of focus. The latest results of the Fidelity Advisor Investment Pulse survey were released today by Fidelity Institutional Asset Management, a distribution and client service organization dedicated to meeting the investment needs of financial advisors, institutions, and consultants.

Even if Fiduciary Rule Changes or Dies, Fund Firms’ New Share Classes Will Stay

The Wall Street Journal; Feb. 7, 2017 1:29 p.m. ET

New mutual-fund share classes meant to help financial advisers comply with the fiduciary rule will move forward at some fund firms regardless of the outcome of the Labor Department’s review of the regulation.

The fiduciary rule, proposed by the Labor Department to mitigate conflicts of interest among those advising investors on their retirement assets, is due to take effect April 10. But President Donald Trump directed the Labor Department to review and halt the retirement-savings rule if it determines it conflicts with the administration’s regulatory principles.

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