DOL Fiduciary Rule: Survey on Financial Advisor Sentiment

Recent Aite Group survey of financial advisors shows that seventy-five percent of advisors surveyed feel satisfied with the firm’s client communication as it relates to DOL rule preparation.

Boston, June 22, 2017 — This latest Aite Group report, DOL Fiduciary Rule: Survey on Financial Advisor Sentiment, focuses on the public debate that continues regarding the Department of Labor (DOL) fiduciary rule and on how financial advisors feel about the challenges they face as the rule becomes enforceable. 

The DOL rule went into full force on June 9, 2017, requiring advisor firms to act in investors’ best interest, exercise care and prudence in recommendations, receive reasonable compensation, and eschew misleading statements. Firms must also oversee these guidelines and provide evidence that they are following them. However, the rule will undergo a transition period until January 2018, and per presidential memorandum will go through a DOL examination to assess the potential impact it may have on retirement savers’ ability to access advice. It is highly likely the rule will be amended, and the rule could even be rescinded. 

“Although no doubt painful, the DOL fiduciary rule has furthered the fiduciary concept in the industry—to the industry’s benefit—when trust-building is critical,” says Denise Valentine, Aite Group senior analyst, adding that “financial advisors see the path ahead requiring some elbow grease, but they are up for the challenge and optimistic.”

This research looks at the financial advisors’ experience on this winding regulatory road and is based on Aite Group’s 2017 online survey of U.S. financial advisors. This report focuses on the responses of 152 financial advisors who actively service retail retirement accounts and state they are familiar with the impact of the DOL fiduciary rule in relation to working with clients.


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