Unlocking Real Value Blog

Fiduciary Redux – Who Wins in the Financial Reform Bill?

I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised when a major industry magazine called the release of today’s Financial Reform Bill a victory for Wall Street in that it did not mandate that all people who sell securities be held to fiduciary standards. Not surprised but certainly disappointed.

This is a shallow victory at best. In fact, I dare say it is a loss – especially for those advisors who fail to see that in the minds of clients they are fiduciaries; and for those sponsor firms that will not encourage their advisors to pursue fiduciary credentials in any case because it is the right thing to do. It is a classic case of perception versus reality. If you are perceived as a fiduciary you should act like one!

And, oh by the way, those advisors who are “forced” to be fiduciaries – don’t you think they will use the fact that you are not against you? If I was in production, it would be the first thing that I would discuss with clients and the first question I would ask them to ask their current advisor.

All any one of us has is our reputation. As I have said before, holding yourself to fiduciary standards is the right thing to do regardless of the rhetoric. Separate yourself from the competition. Do the right thing – and perhaps some day financial services professionals will get some positive press!

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