July 30, 2010
I have been made aware that you are considering imposing a ruling that all broker-dealers be held to the same legal fiduciary requirement investment advisers have when providing advice to clients. I believe they we are already acting in the "best interest" of our clients. Additionally, the Act does not define what the rules are for compliance with a legal "best interest" standard - thus subjecting registered representatives to the potential of never ending lawsuits. For example, is "best" the cheapest recommended product? The "best" premium relative to the benefit of the product? The product with the "best" historic underwriting and service standards? Is it the one from the carrier with the "best" rating? The fiduciary standard in essence adds a vague legal liability standard that looks back (sometimes after many years) and is enforced after the fact by the SEC or trial lawyers who have perfect vision in hindsight.
Unending, and ambiguous regulation does nothing to protect comsumers, but does add to their costs because of the underlying additional expenses to produce products for their benefit. Please reject the temptation to regulate us further under the Dodd-Frank Act.