DOL's fiduciary rule announcement and FAQs

On May 22nd, Department of Labor (DOL) Secretary Alexander Acosta capped months of uncertainty about the DOL’s fiduciary duty rule by announcing that the June 9th compliance date would not be delayed further. While this means that the rule’s “best interest” standard for retirement advice will go into effect on June 9th, full implementation of the rule is not scheduled until January 2018. 

Following Secretary Acosta’s announcement, the DOL clarified its policy on enforcement through the end of this year and released a new set of FAQs, one of which made clear that it will continue an in-depth analysis of the rule and consider modifications, as directed by a February White House Memorandum. 

Potential changes aside, the debate over keeping or killing the fiduciary duty rule is becoming moot. As we have seen across the industry, firms are not only proceeding with actions to comply with a best interest standard, but are also seeking a competitive edge in the rapidly changing brokerage industry by touting their commitment to transparency.

  1. T-minus two weeks to a ‘best interest’ standard.  
  2. The BIC exemption will undergo significant changes. 
  3. More clarity in FAQs. 
  4. DOL has a non-enforcement policy, but other agencies may not follow suit. 
  5. Amendments to PTE 84-24 already delayed, will they go into effect? 

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A publication of PwC's financial services regulatory practice

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Julien Courbe
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