Now that the Department of Labor fiduciary rule is officially dead, it is a sad day for the financial services industry and for investors who place their trust in Wall Street.
This legislation was hardly a draconian measure and, frankly, Wall Street and the rest of the financial services industry should be ashamed of having lobbied so aggressively to block it. Now that the rule is officially done, financial advisors, stock brokers and other non-fiduciary financial professionals will essentially be held to the same suitability standard, which only requires recommendations be “suitable” for their clients’ needs.
In other words, the status quo on Wall Street will remain and continue to erode what remains of the public trust.
As a fiduciary advisor myself, it’s disheartening to know that there a number of people out there who will continue to receive recommendations that fail to put their best interests ahead of Wall Street’s. While the demise of the rule is most certainly a black mark on the financial services industry, it will ironically continue to be a boon for fiduciary advisors like myself.
Selfishly, the industry’s failure to embrace the fiduciary rule will continue to afford fiduciary advisors a platform to differentiate themselves in an otherwise vast and blurry field of competitors.
Fiduciary advisors hold themselves to the highest standard and strive to do the right thing for their clients all the time. A true fiduciary does not need the DoL, Congress or any other regulatory/legislative body to force proper business conduct or practice.
Your clients should educate themselves on the differences between fiduciary advisors and other investment professionals, and they should take action make sure they choose to work with someone who will advocate in their best interests and take a stand against the predatory practices of Wall Street.