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DOL Fiduciary News: June 28, 2017

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Labor's Alexander Acosta and SEC's Jay Clayton tell lawmakers they will work together on fiduciary rule

InvestmentNews; June 27, 2017 @ 2:13 pm

Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta and Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Jay Clayton told lawmakers on Tuesday that their agencies would work together on investment advice regulation.

In separate appearances before Senate panels, the two regulators stressed the cooperation that Republican legislators and opponents of the DOL fiduciary rule are demanding. Supporters of the rule, which was finalized last year by the Obama administration, maintain that the DOL did consult with the SEC while it was written.

"The SEC has important expertise and they need to be part of the conversation," Mr. Acosta said to the Senate Appropriations subcommittee on labor and health and human services. "It's my hope that as the SEC also receives a full complement of commissioners that the SEC will continue to work with the Department of Labor on this issue."

Comments Frame SEC Fiduciary Debate

InsuranceNewsNet; June 27, 2017

Comments are pouring into the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on the industry’s favorite topic: the fiduciary standard.

The SEC reports 41 comments were received as of Tuesday. New chairman Jay Clayton penned a June 1 public statement staking a claim to any fiduciary standard.

The Dodd-Frank Act of 2010 directed the SEC to produce a fiduciary standard, but the agency has been plagued by political divisions in the years since. Phase one of the Department of Labor (DOL) fiduciary standard for all retirement funds took effect June 9.

Phase two requiring substantial disclosures and establishing a private right of action under the Best Interest Contract Exemption takes effect Jan. 1, 2018. The BIC exemption will be needed to sell variable and fixed indexed annuities under the DOL rules.

The question is whether the SEC is too late to stake its claim to a fiduciary rule, as many in the industry favor.

Third Annual Advisor Authority Study Shows Investors and Advisors Aligned on Importance of Fiduciary Standard -- Regardless of DOL Fiduciary Rule [Jefferson National]

LOUISVILLE, Ky., June 27, 2017 -- The first phase of the Department of Labor's (DOL) Fiduciary Rule went into effect recently, and while investors may not understand every nuance of the new rule, investors and advisors are clearly aligned on the importance of a fiduciary standard, according to the third annual Advisor Authority study conducted by Harris Poll and commissioned by Jefferson National, operating as Nationwide's advisory solutions business. Likewise, when investors choose an advisor and when advisors are building their practice, a fiduciary standard is a key consideration, according to the latest findings of this online survey of roughly 1,600 Registered Investment Advisors (RIAs), fee-based advisors and individual investors nationwide.

"The industry has been changing for years, as more advisors migrate toward a fee-based approach when providing advice, and as consumers desire more simplicity, transparency and choice in their financial products. It's a powerful trend—and there's no going back," said Mitchell H. Caplan, leader of Nationwide's advisory solutions business. "The new DOL Fiduciary Rule has been a catalyst for change across the industry and creates opportunity. As part of Nationwide, we are committed to ensuring the company can serve more advisors in the ways they prefer to do business."

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