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The fiduciary rule has transformed the way wirehouses, broker-dealers and banks do business with their retirement clients.

While the Department of Labor’s regulation has roiled the entire industry, firms including Merrill Lynch, JPMorgan Chase and Ameriprise have made some of the most far-reaching and costly changes.

Financial Planning analyzed 13 top firms’ compliance plans and public statements about the rule. Certain elements are slated to go into effect June 9, with the rest Jan. 1.

All firms that submitted a comment to the agency called for delaying the rule, if not for outright repeal. Many top executives publicly supported the spirit of the regulation. Yet, few, if any, said they backed the initial April deadline or the subsequent June date (a few called for additional delays).

Privately, though, firms spent tens of millions of dollars altering their commissions and fees and preparing to qualify for the rule’s best interest contract exemption.

President Trump’s administration may well push back the full implementation date or even repeal the rule. Despite the uncertainty, wirehouses, broker-dealers and banks alike pronounced themselves ready to deal with any outcome that may take shape in coming months.

To learn more about each firm’s compliance plans and public statements about the rule, click through our slideshow.


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