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Possible Six-Month Delay for Fiduciary Rule; DOL Makes Concessions for Certain Annuity Sellers

The effective date of the DOL Fiduciary Rule may be delayed for six months, the Wall Street Journal reported. The rule is among several Obama Administration priorities that are being targeted as President Donald J. Trump takes office. The WSJ reports that a six-month delay could give Congress time to revoke the rule with legislation. The U.S. Labor Department proposed to ease a key component of the Fiduciary Rule by allowing certain annuity sellers to charge commission for offering investment advice, the WSJ also reported. According to the report, the proposal would let insurance intermediaries with at least $1.5 billion in annual fixed annuity sales over the past three years to take on supervisory responsibility for independent annuity sellers and qualify them for an exemption to the rule. Meanwhile, House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling called for repeal of the Fiduciary Rule and to strip the Financial Stability Oversight Council of its power to designate financial institutions as systemically important, among other financial industry initiatives.