August 13, 2010
The consequences of the new regulation that you are considering will be very damaging to middle and lower class consumers of financial service products.
The suitability standards and compliance oversight for registered representatives affiliated with broker dealers are very stringent and heavily enforced. Current regulations already provide strong and appropriate safeguards.
Requiring compliance with 'fiduciary standards' will drive many advisers out of the market and eliminate a valuable advisory resource to consumers, especially in middle- and lower-income markets.
Additional risk of lawsuits involving registered representatives will increase costs to consumers.
Driving every registered representative to fee-only compensation will not necessarily result in better, unbiased advice for the consumer. Consumers already have access to fee based planning and are making a different choice for financial advice.
It would be wise to consider the total affect of this new regulation. I strongly urge you to maintain the suitablility standard for registered representatives so the our clients can best be served.