Must-read: Yuka Hayashi and Anna Prior: “U.S. Unveils Retirement-Savings Revamp, but With a Few Concessions to Industry”

Must-Read: IMHO, long, long overdue…

Yuka Hayashi and Anna Prior: U.S. Unveils Retirement-Savings Revamp, but With a Few Concessions to Industry: “The Obama administration Wednesday rolled out a long-anticipated new rule aimed at transforming the way the financial industry delivers retirement-savings advice…

…Administration officials intend it as a direct attack on what they consider ‘a business model [that] rests on bilking hard-working Americans out of their retirement money,’ Jeff Zients, director of the White House National Economic Council, told reporters Tuesday. About $14 trillion in retirement savings could be affected… which requires stockbrokers providing retirement advice to act as ‘fiduciaries’ who will serve their clients’ ‘best interest.’ That is stricter than the current standard, which only says they need to offer ‘suitable’ recommendations…. Still… the financial industry… has fought the regulation since it was first proposed six years ago, [and] the final version includes a number of modifications… extending the implementation period… giving advisers more flexibility to keep touting their firm’s own mutual funds… curbing the paperwork and disclosure requirements…. Those fixes… could also give opposing companies and skeptical lawmakers more time to try to dilute the rule further or even try to kill it altogether under the new administration…. The new rule will be the centerpiece of President Barack Obama’s efforts to help middle-class families build retirement savings in an era when few have guaranteed pension benefits…

April 6, 2016


Brad DeLong
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