Democratic Senators Urge Changes to Fiduciary Proposal

Led by Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), eight Democratic senators wrote to the Department of Labor on Friday urging several fixes in its re-proposed fiduciary standard under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act. While the senators overall welcomed the rulemaking, they said they had heard “a number of thoughtful concerns from stakeholders … and we believe the guidance can be improved and enhanced.”

Among other items, the senators called on DoL to loosen language around IRA investment education and to revisit the “best interest contract” exemption to ensure it will be useful to bankers and other financial professionals. ABA and others have noted significant challenges in the BIC exemption that would make it less likely that banks will use it.

ABA has called on DoL to withdraw the entire proposal and take a different approach that would be less burdensome to the industry and provide more options for individuals seeking retirement savings. ABA will testify this week before DoL hearings on the rulemaking.