Results for "Fiduciary Corner"

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Proxy voting lets fiduciaries use power

October 2, 2011

Proxy voting is one of the most powerful but underutilized tools that fiduciaries have to serve the best interests of investors. Through their voting power, shareholders, especially institutional shareholders, have the ability to influence directly...

Fiduciary foes: Don't count your chickens

September 4, 2011

When Republican members of the House Financial Services Committee warned the Securities and Exchange Commission to halt the process of fiduciary rule making, it was a pretty blatant signal that the stage has been set for a courtroom showdown....

Taking their cue from Congress

August 7, 2011

I think I found the model for how opponents of the fiduciary standard hope to render the standard meaningless after financial regulatory reform. The model has four parts that can work perfectly to dilute the fiduciary standard and render it...

DOL plugs a yawning gap in ERISA rules

June 26, 2011

There is a gaping hole in ERISA regulations that allows many investment service providers to escape fiduciary accountability for the advice that they provide to retirement plan sponsors and participants. The problem is that the Employee Retirement...

Cultural changes overshadow reform

May 29, 2011

A shift in culture for investment advisers is overtaking regulatory reform in scope and significance. Although subtle evidence of the shift can be observed in the United States, it is readily apparent in Australia and New Zealand, where I recently...

The CFP Board is right on ethics

May 1, 2011

Reactions to the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards Inc.'s new requirements for ethics continuing-education programs have been mixed. Although there has been nearly universal acknowledgement of the need for change to make ethics...

Marketing yourself as a fiduciary

April 3, 2011

The fiduciary standard is all about serving the best interests of investors. Even so, it can also serve the interests of investment advisers by being a part of an effective marketing strategy. There are three compelling reasons why advisers...

Not delivering on your promises is costly

March 6, 2011

“Well done is better than well said,” was Benjamin Franklin's wisdom on accountability. It is a message that fiduciaries should take to heart. Saying one thing and doing another, or failing to deliver on an advertised service, can be a source...

Where does advisory industry go from here?

February 6, 2011

Without the unequivocal support of all the members of the Securities and Exchange Commission, just how much can we learn about the future direction of the regulation of investment advice from the two SEC studies that were released last month?...

Review the process, not just performance

January 9, 2011

At this time of year, investment stewards — retirement plan sponsors, and managers and trustees of charitable organization investment committees — are receiving 2010 year-end investment performance reports and poring over them to prepare...

An adjustment is coming for reps

December 5, 2010

For some time now, there has been a net outflow of advisers from broker-dealers to investment advisory firms. For most of these individuals, the change involves a voluntary transition from a rules-based fair-dealing standard to a principles-based...

Rule change takes aim at 'schlocky advice'

November 7, 2010

Last month, the Department of Labor proposed to expand the definition of the term “fiduciary” under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974. According to the DOL, the rule “would protect beneficiaries of pension plans and individual...

Dodd-Frank: What it means for sales of proprietary products

October 17, 2010

During the busy fall conference season for financial professionals, virtually every agenda includes coverage of issues associated with regulatory reform and the extension of the fiduciary standard to brokers and dealers who provide advice to...

'Buyer beware' is no basis for a fiduciary rule

September 12, 2010

What is the purpose of disclosing a conflict of interest? The answer depends on whether a financial adviser is a fiduciary. If you are a fiduciary, a disclosure of a conflict is a notification of an exception to the relationship governed by...

The role of a fiduciary is timeless

August 15, 2010

As required by the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010, the Securities and Exchange Commission has begun a six-month study of the regulation of brokers under the fair-dealing standard and advisers under the fiduciary...

For fiduciary backers, fight not over

July 11, 2010

An important milestone has been reached on the path to the professionalization of financial advice with the inclusion of language in the financial-reform bill which would authorize the SEC to issue rules to extend the fiduciary standard to broker-dealers...

In volatile times, it pays to revisit the IPS

June 6, 2010

With financial markets careening up and down amid new financial, en-vironmental and geopolitical crises, investors are justifiably nervous about whether seemingly desperate times call for desperate measures. Financial stewards, as well as the...

Goldman proves need for higher standards

May 9, 2010

While getting pilloried in hearings before the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, representatives from The Goldman Sachs Group Inc. characterized their firm as a market maker, denied that they had fiduciary status, and displayed...

Level fees are right way to avoid conflicts

April 11, 2010

The investment advice regulation for 401(k) plans recently released by the Labor Department offers more than proposed guidelines for making advice available to retirement plan participants: It provides clear evidence of why the growing regulatory...

'I pledge to be your fiduciary'

March 14, 2010

In a speech at the 2010 Investment Adviser Compliance Forum, Elisse Walter, a member of the Securities and Exchange Commission, expressed strong support for the extension of the fiduciary standard for financial professionals, calling it “critical...

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