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Investors, don't lose sleep over the midterm elections

October 20, 2018

The early October jolt of stock market volatility seemed to awaken investors briefly from a relative sense of calm and reminded us that pullbacks and downside risk are part of the price to be paid for upside performance. Despite just about every...

After Ohio National decision, the fine print of annuity trails is now a must-read

October 13, 2018

It's still a fresh sting, hearing that Ohio National Financial Services Inc. plans to terminate servicing agreements and cut off trail commissions to broker-dealers that sell some of its variable annuities. Can they really do this, some B-Ds...

Voya cybersecurity blunder should serve as a wake-up call to the entire industry

October 6, 2018

By now, anyone responsible for cybersecurity at a financial advisory firm is probably tired of hearing about the subject. But the recent $1 million fine levied against Voya Financial Services should serve as a wake-up call to everyone in the...

Long-term-care insurance gets a boost, but there's more to do

September 29, 2018

Among the possible costs that must be factored into retirement planning is that of long-term care. Research shows that as Americans get older, 70% will need some form of assistance, which can range from help at home with the activities of daily...

SEC's proposed advice rule is about as clear as mud

September 22, 2018

The effort by the Securities and Exchange Commission to clarify for consumers the differing standards of financial professionals could be all for naught. While we give the SEC credit for attempting to salvage some of the momentum and investor-protection...

Market swings are inevitable, so help your clients focus on overall financial health

September 17, 2018

We've heard a lot of painful remembrances of the slow but steady market drain of 2008-09 over the past week — or, really, since September hit. What has become known as the Great Recession has stuck with many of us, mentally. Despite a stock...

Many young staffers have benefits needs beyond a simple 401(k)

September 1, 2018

Advisers often bemoan the shortage of talent that's preventing a natural growth in their business — if only they could find the right person, and keep them. The trickle of graduates coming out of financial planning schools is one factor, but...

DOL fiduciary rule might be dead, but its ghost hovers over the financial advice industry

August 18, 2018

The early bird doesn't always get the worm. Financial firms that moved quickly to prepare for full implementation of the Department of Labor's fiduciary rule and now want to reverse those policies must move cautiously to unwind the changes on...

Viewpoints differ on diversity and inclusion, but this we agree on: There are many ways to improve

August 4, 2018

Diversity is​ viewed in very different ways by readers of InvestmentNews. This came into sharp focus when reading the responses to a survey on diversity we conducted in July as a sounding board for this week's issue. This edition of InvestmentNews...

Designations matter to your clients

July 21, 2018

It is not uncommon these days to hear certain corners of the financial advice industry tout their fiduciary status as a major appeal among clients and potential clients. But the truth is, most consumers and many current clients are still finding...

Finra's disclosure on use of fine money a good first step to more transparency

July 7, 2018

The Financial​ Industry Regulatory Authority Inc. is to be applauded for revealing for the first time how it uses the money it collects in fines. This is the latest in a series of steps Finra has taken as it moves to improve transparency,...

Independence of auditors critical when easing broker regulations

June 23, 2018

A​ pair of sister​ bills introduced in the House and Senate this month appear to be just the type of reasonable regulatory relief small businesses in the advice industry are clamoring for. The bipartisan legislation, known as the Small Business...

A more expansive future requires multiple pricing models

June 16, 2018

Charging fees based on assets under management has served the financial planning industry well for the past few decades. But the modern financial advice business is starting to cut varied paths toward different pricing models that might be better...

Does the SEC really need to define 'best interest'?

June 9, 2018

Best interest. Act in the client's best interest. Put the client's best interest ahead of your own. Regulation Best Interest. The "interest" part of that phrase is pretty easy to understand. Words such as well-being, benefit and advantage are...

IPO filing could usher in new era of legitimacy for RIAs

June 2, 2018

You would be forgiven if you skipped past the news that Focus Financial Partners filed for an initial public stock offering in the days leading up to Memorial Day weekend. The move, however, is something registered investment advisers will want...

Transparency, credibility, fairness: Finra's decision to explain rationale for penalties is a welcome one

May 19, 2018

The object​ of all justice systems should be, in the words of Gilbert and Sullivan: "To let the punishment fit the crime." Systems of justice are more likely to achieve the dual objectives of punishment and deterrence when all can see that...

Financial schemes against seniors are most often committed by people closest to them

May 19, 2018

There are plenty of scams that strangers come up with to trick the elderly into giving up their money, but most financial schemes against seniors are committed by those who are closest to the victims: family, friends and caregivers. While that...

It's time to educate your clients, and yourself, about alternative investments

May 5, 2018

Individual investors are being tempted by alternative investments as they seek greater diversification of their portfolios, so advisers should be preparing to answer questions about them from their clients. Alternative investments generally...

A pat on the back for progress, but Finra has a long way to go

April 28, 2018

A​ year after launching a top-to-bottom review of its operations, called Finra 360, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority Inc. last week issued a 40-page progress report. As far as these types of assessments go, it is fairly typical...

SEC advice rule: Time for brokers, advisers to weigh in

April 21, 2018

The Securities and Exchange Commission has proposed a new rule governing investment advice, and all interested parties should make their voices heard through constructive feedback during the 90-day comment period. Who better to share their opinions...

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