Category Archives: Press Releases and Statements

Financial Planning Coalition Statement on Louisiana House Bill 748

Washington, D.C., May 9, 2018 – The Financial Planning Coalition – comprising Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. (CFP Board), the Financial Planning Association® (FPA®) and the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors (NAPFA) – issued the following statement in advance of today’s Louisiana State Legislature hearing on House Bill 748:

“The Financial Planning Coalition strongly opposes House Bill 748, as it is currently written, which would severely restrict consumer access to ethical and competent financial planning services from Certified Financial Planner professionals. There are 586 CFP® professionals in the State of Louisiana serving tens of thousands of clients. If this legislation becomes law, these and other consumers would be the ones most adversely impacted. Unlike other financial services designations and certifications, the CFP® certification is the only one that carries a robust enforcement function, requires a comprehensive exam and demands that those holding the certification agree to put their clients’ interests above their own.

While we certainly understand the intent of the broader legislation as written, we believe it will result in less protections for Louisiana investors and savers. We respectfully ask that the legislation be revised so that CFP® professionals can continue to use their CFP® certification in the way intended, which is to demonstrate to the public that they have met the highest standard in ethics and competency in financial planning.  If those revisions are not made, we urge lawmakers to oppose the legislation.”

Financial Planning Coalition Statement Following SEC Meeting on Fiduciary Standards

Washington, D.C., April 18, 2018 – The Financial Planning Coalition – comprising Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. (CFP Board), the Financial Planning Association® (FPA®) and the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors (NAPFA) – issued the following statement in response to today’s Securities and Exchange Committee meeting on fiduciary standards.

“The proposals – as discussed by the SEC – appear to be a step forward for investors.

The Financial Planning Coalition looks forward to thoroughly reviewing each of the three proposals in great detail and providing input to the commission informed by CFP Board’s recently approved new Standards of Conduct and Code of Ethics.

We appreciate the opportunity to comment on these proposals and will make recommendations to strengthen them in keeping with what consumers expect and deserve – a fiduciary standard requiring financial professionals to put their clients’ interest first when providing financial advice.”

Financial Planning Coalition Statement on SEC Fiduciary Standards Meeting

Washington, D.C., April 18, 2018 – The Financial Planning Coalition – comprising Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. (CFP Board), the Financial Planning Association® (FPA®) and the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors (NAPFA) – issued the following statement in advance of the Securities and Exchange Commission meeting on fiduciary standards.

“Today, the SEC will finally have a meeting that should have happened nearly eight years ago when Congress explicitly authorized the SEC to enact a fiduciary rule under the Dodd-Frank Act. We expect to hear the Commissioners express support for this important consumer protection and that the proposed rule will have meaningful language providing American investors a fiduciary standard of care. We look forward to reviewing the SEC’s proposal and to submitting our comments as part of the public comment process.”

Financial Planning Coalition Responds to Court’s Decision on DOL Fiduciary Rule

Washington, DC – The Financial Planning Coalition (Coalition) – comprised of Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards (CFP Board), the Financial Planning Association® (FPA®), and the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors (NAPFA) – issued the following statement in response to the latest court decision regarding the Department of Labor’s fiduciary standard rule:

“The Coalition has been a long-time advocate for a fiduciary standard for investment advice. While we are disappointed in the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals decision, we will continue to support rule-making that will bring substantial practical benefits and additional investor protections for all consumers. The Coalition looks forward to reviewing the Securities and Exchange Commission’s proposed rule and to providing feedback and comments that are in the best interest of consumers and financial advisors.

A strengthened fiduciary rule, encompassing the duties of care and loyalty, is both necessary and appropriate for all financial professionals providing personalized investment advice and represents the best way to protect American investors. A meaningful, legally enforceable fiduciary standard of care that puts investors’ interests first is the best way to strengthen investor protection when personalized investment advice is dispensed.”

The Coalition has previously shared its stance on this topic, most recently highlighted in its response to the SEC’s request for information regarding standards of conduct for investment advisers and broker-dealers.

Financial Planning Coalition Urges Trump Administration to Prioritize Fiduciary Standard Rule

Washington, D.C., February 2, 2018 – The Financial Planning Coalition – comprising Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. (CFP Board), the Financial Planning Association® (FPA®) and the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors (NAPFA) – issued the following statement surrounding President Trump’s State of the Union Address and the one-year anniversary of his presidential memorandum ordering a review of the Department of Labor’s (DOL) fiduciary rule.

“President Trump lauded the growth of Americans’ 401(k)s and pensions during his first State of the Union Address. But while many Americans’ retirement savings continue to thrive, it is imperative that these financial gains are preserved for the long term. The American people deserve to get a good deal when they seek advice for retirement savings. The Coalition calls on the President and his regulatory agencies to prioritize full implementation of a fiduciary standard of care to prevent conflicted financial advice and protect Americans’ hard-earned savings.”

One year ago, the President submitted a presidential memorandum to the Labor Secretary to review its fiduciary rule. Since then, the DOL has delayed the full implementation of the rule – which already addresses concerns raised by lawmakers, regulators, financial industry organizations, public interest groups and consumers – and unnecessarily jeopardizes the financial well-being of millions of Americans, who lose billions of dollars each year because of conflicts of interest. Continued delay of this important measure denies millions of people the retirement security that they deserve.

While the Coalition is pleased that the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is pursuing a fiduciary standard for all investment advice, it is important that any rule proposed by the SEC not replace but complement the DOL rule.

The Coalition believes that requiring advisers to work in retirement investors’ best interest is an essential and long overdue reform. The Coalition strongly urges the Department of Labor to continue its work toward full implementation of investment advice standards that can support American businesses and consumers as soon as possible.

Financial Planning Coalition Statement on Court Decision in Support of DOL Fiduciary Rule

Washington, D.C. – The Financial Planning Coalition – comprising Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. (CFP Board), the Financial Planning Association® (FPA®) and the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors (NAPFA) – issued the following statement on the recent court decision in support of the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) ability to issue a Fiduciary Rule:

“Today the American retirement saver won an important victory in a North Texas courtroom as Chief Judge Barbara Lynn supported the Department of Labor’s position that it had the authority to issue a revised fiduciary rule that will protect millions of Americans’ hard-earned retirement assets.

In rendering her 81-page decision, Judge Lynn relied, in part, on the experiences of CFP® professionals operating under a fiduciary standard when providing financial planning services similar to that in the Best Interest Contract Exemption (BICE) as cited in the Financial Planning Coalition’s (FPC) amicus brief:

“Here, the input of amicus Financial Planning Coalition (“FPC”) is pertinent. Although FPC heard the same concerns regarding compensation when it implemented similar standards to BICE in 2008, commission-based compensation has survived, and FPC’s financial professionals continue “to serve middle-income investors using all types of [] compensation models and other innovative methods.”

The Court also finds that the conditions to qualify for BICE are reasonable. FPC notes that its almost 80,000 members have since 2008 successfully operated under a regime similar to that in BICE, including a fiduciary standard, a written contract, disclosure of certain fees, costs, and conflicts of interest, prudency standards, and policies to mitigate conflicts.

The Financial Planning Coalition is gratified that the DOL prevailed in this case. We will continue to encourage the Trump Administration and Congress to avoid delay of the rule’s implementation so that the American retirement saver will benefit from investment advice in his or her best interest.”

###