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Speculation Abounds as SEC Expected to Propose Fiduciary Standard at Open Meeting

According to a notice posted on its website the SEC will host an open meeting on April 18, 2018 to discuss the long-awaited investment adviser/broker dealer conduct standards. The notice has sparked discussion and speculation, with some industry observers and trade groups encouraged or concerned by the SEC’s notice, according to a report in Investment News. Indicators pointing to a disclosure-based rule raised concerns that the SEC’s proposal would not adequately address the best interest standard on par with the DOL’s rule. Observers also point out the notice did not suggest that the SEC will clarify who may or may not describe themselves as “financial advisers.”  According to the agenda, the SEC will consider:

  • whether to propose new and amended rules and forms to require registered investment advisers and registered broker-dealers to provide a brief relationship summary to retail investors.
  • whether to propose a rule to establish a standard of conduct for broker-dealers and natural persons who are associated persons of a broker-dealer when making a recommendation of any securities transaction or investment strategy involving securities to a retail customer.
  • whether to propose a Commission interpretation of the standard of conduct for investment advisers.