Removing Barriers Blog

Executive Order Delays Fiduciary Rule and Suggest Additional Analysis of Impact
Posted February 03, 2017 by ManojBhoi

In an Order signed Friday, the Administration directed the Department of Labor to further examine the Fiduciary Duty Rule to determine whether it may adversely affect the ability of Americans to gain access to retirement information and financial advice. CUNA sought and obtained improvements to final rule, but remained concerned that regulatory burdens and complexity associated with this rule could make it more difficult for consumers of all means to receive support planning for their financial future from credit union service organizations and some credit unions. 
A memorandum to the Secretary of Labor directs the DOL to examine the Fiduciary Duty Rule to determine whether it may adversely affect the ability of Americans to gain access to retirement information and financial advice.  

As part of the directive, the DOL must prepare an updated economic and legal analysis concerning the likely impact of the Fiduciary Duty Rule, which shall consider (but shall not be limited to) the following: 

(i) Whether the anticipated applicability of the Fiduciary Duty Rule has harmed or is likely to harm investors due to a reduction of Americans’ access to certain retirement savings offerings, retirement product structures, retirement savings information, or related financial advice;  
(ii)  Whether the anticipated applicability of the Fiduciary Duty Rule has resulted in dislocations or disruptions within the retirement services industry that may adversely affect investors or retirees;  
(iii)  Whether the Fiduciary Duty Rule is likely to cause an increase in litigation, and an increase in the prices that investors and retirees must pay to gain access to retirement services.

The directive states that if the DOL makes an affirmative determination as to any of these considerations, or if it concludes for any other reason after appropriate review that the Fiduciary Duty Rule is inconsistent with the priority identified earlier in this memorandum -- then it shall publish for notice and comment a proposed rule rescinding or revising the Rule, as appropriate and as consistent with law.  
CUNA will be following the DOL’s action on this rule as well as legislation in Congress impacting it.