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Good show, Donaldson, except for last act

July 11, 2005

Talk about going out with a bang. While William H. Donaldson may have had good intentions, his recent actions simply cannot be condoned. On June 29, one day before retiring as chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission, the 74-year-old...

Bush must use veto to rein in Congress

June 27, 2005

It is almost, but not quite, too late for President Bush to impose some fiscal discipline on Congress. He must veto some of Congress' irresponsible spending, sending it back to rethink its priorities. The place to start is with the highways...

Let's not quibble over when a fee is a 'fee'

June 20, 2005

It is time for some clear thinking about adviser compensation. That is the implication of the brewing dispute within the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors in Arlington Heights, Ill., over whether advisers who receive asset-based...

SEC chief must protect investor interests

June 13, 2005

Whoever replaces William H. Donaldson as chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission should go directly to its website and get a clear understanding of the job's responsibilities. As stated on the site: "The primary mission of the Securities...

Despite cost, AMT should be repealed

June 6, 2005

Wonder of wonders: Four senators are making an attempt to repeal the alternative minimum tax. Sens. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, Max Baucus, D-Mont., Jon Kyl, R- Ariz., and Ron Wyden, D-Ore., introduced...

In support of deferring tax on fund gains

May 30, 2005

A very important piece of legislation introduced this month would provide tax relief for millions of Americans who invest in mutual funds for long-term-savings goals. The key to the Generating Retirement Ownership Through Long-Term Holding Act...

Fund prospectuses still need some work

May 23, 2005

It's time for the Securities and Exchange Commission and mutual fund industry to revisit prospectuses. The prospectuses must be made more useful, and more appealing, to help the average fund investor, especially the first-time investor, make...

Congress should protect our protectors

May 16, 2005

Lawmakers have correctly resurrected a bipartisan bill that would protect service members and their families from unscrupulous financial product sales. The Military Personnel Financial Services Protection Act, HR 458, recently passed the House...

The FPA's lawsuit deserves support

May 9, 2005

The Financial Planning Association is right to continue its lawsuit against the Securities and Exchange Commission over the so-called Merrill Lynch Rule. It should continue the suit in an effort to hold the SEC's feet to the fire in the hope...

Bush should press Social Security fight

May 2, 2005

President Bush, during his press conference last week, in effect challenged Congress to act now to fix Social Security. Congress must rise to the challenge, but the chances of getting significant reform remain slight. Without a Herculean effort...

Penalties must match abuses at the NYSE

April 25, 2005

Despite all the claims from the securities industry that it is trying to clean up its act, dishonest activity continues to thrive on Wall Street. The latest black eye involves a settlement reached earlier this month by the Securities and Exchange...

Big Board needs to get its house in order

April 18, 2005

Talk about a baptism by fire. Marshall N. Carter, the new chairman of the New York Stock Exchange, faces several critical issues before he even starts the job. He must put the Richard A. Grasso controversy behind him and immediately address...

The IRS needs to get tougher on tax cheats

April 4, 2005

The old saying goes that there are only two things in life that you can count on: death and taxes. However, an Internal Revenue Service study has revealed that there is a third: tax cheating. Tax cheating is on the rise along with other forms...

High time for point-of-sale-disclosure rules

March 28, 2005

It is time to put point-of-sale-disclosure rules into place. The latest Securities and Exchange Commission revision of the rules seems to have produced a good compromise. The evidence of that is that while some in the industry argue that the...

Congress should overhaul the AMT

March 21, 2005

The alternative minimum tax is a good idea gone bad. The AMT is a hot issue, and Congress has found reason to do little to change the law. The tax is a burden on taxpayers, and Congress needs to take action to revamp it. The tax law, which has...

Raising FICA level could create problems

March 14, 2005

President Bush and Congress should be extremely careful about raising the salary level on which the Federal Insurance Contributions Act tax - the Social Security tax - is levied. Last month, he said that while he is opposed to raising the 6.2%...

SEC must update restricted stock plan rules

March 7, 2005

A great many executives in corporate America receive dividends on stock they don't actually own. These executives get large dividend payments as part of their company's restricted-share -award plan. Restricted shares refer to company stock used...

Roye successor will have big shoes to fill

February 28, 2005

There are some big shoes to fill at the Securities and Exchange Commission. Following a wave of mutual fund scandals, Paul Roye, director of the SEC's investment management division, spearheaded an overhaul of the industry. The mutual fund regulator...

SEC should set guidelines for 'rent-a-cops'

February 21, 2005

Small financial planning and investment advisory firms need help with regulatory compliance. Such small firms, unless run by sole practitioners, must appoint chief compliance officers. The problem is, small firms cannot afford to hire specialist...

Chief executives need to be made accountable

February 21, 2005

It's apparent that in the world of big-time chief executives, there is virtually no downside to any damage left behind after their departure. Carleton S. Fiorina was fired from her chief executive position at Hewlett-Packard Co. for failing...

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