Financial Planning Coalition: Draft Legislation May Slow Fiduciary Standard Rulemaking, Leave Consumers Vulnerable

Washington, D.C. – The Financial Planning Coalition – comprised of Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. (CFP Board), the Financial Planning Association (FPA) and the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors (NAPFA) – today expressed concern regarding a discussion draft of legislation circulated by Rep. Ann Wagner (R-MO), which could have the effect of slowing implementation of a rule extending a fiduciary standard to broker-dealers who provide personalized investment advice.

If enacted, the draft legislation – which is slated to be discussed tomorrow during a House Financial Services Subcommittee hearing – could add a roadblock to implementation of a key Dodd-Frank provision that allows the Securities and Exchange Commission to adopt a rule requiring broker-dealers to adhere to the same fiduciary standard as investment advisers.

While the Coalition appreciates the Subcommittee’s recognition that adopting a uniform fiduciary standard is a critical element of enhanced investor protection, it is nevertheless concerned that some of the draft legislation’s new requirements would be duplicative of existing Federal law and may have the unintended consequence of frustrating any ongoing efforts to increase standards of care for financial professionals.

The Coalition looks forward to working with Rep. Wagner, as well as other Members of Congress, and being a constructive participant in efforts to find ways to help protect investors.