July 28, 2010
To Whom It May Concern,
A fiduciary standard for representatives is an impossibility since you cannot be a broker and a fiduciary at the same time.
You cannot be a fiduciary, in any way, shape or form, unless you are representing a client's interests exclusively and at all times. Claiming to be a fiduciary when, in practice, you are a broker, representing your broker-dealer employer, is misrepresentation and a major conflict of interest. This practice needs to stop.
A registered representative should be prohibited from using the term "advisor" and "adviser" in their course of business--period. How about requiring they use of a term that accurately describes what brokers do and is generally understood by the public? How about "broker"?
Additionally, this should also go both ways. Any advisors who like to dabble on the side with brokerage products like annuities and insurance should no longer be allowed to call themselves "advisors". These activities should automatically change your job title to broker or insurance agent--anything but fiduciary or advisor.
A much less important item: how about spelling advisors with an "O" instead of an "E". The rest of the planet uses "O".