WASHINGTON -- Even as the SEC is contemplating an expansion of fiduciary rules to include broker-dealers who operate in the retail space, some advocates argue that the regulatory interpretation of the responsibilities under a fiduciary standard has strayed from common-law precedent and become dangerously diluted.

Ron Rhoades, a CFP and an assistant business professor at Alfred State College in Alfred, N.Y., where he is curriculum coordinator of the financial planning program, worries that big brokerages and other heavy hitters representing the financial services industry wield an outsized influence in Washington that has defanged some of the investor protections traditionally associated with fiduciary duty.

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