September 12, 2004
As an investor, I find it odd that the SEC has sanctioned a rule allowing stockbrokers to present themselves to the public as financial planners. This rule is deceptive. A paralegal would not be permitted to set up shop as a fully qualified attorney. Nor would the U.S. Government allow a nurse practitioner to advertise him/herself as a fully qualified physician. Yet that is what the SEC is doing by allowing stockbrokers to set themselves up as financial planners.
It seems to me that this rule is a serious breach of the SEC's own fiduciary responsibility to the American public. You are supposed to be protecting the interests of the investing public, who already have had various frauds perpetrated on them, by not permitting such a travesty.
The SEC should withdraw this rule. Financial planning is not 'incidental' to my long-term financial well-being, and you should be not be regarding it as such. If stockbrokers want to hold themselves out as financial planners, they should have to live up to the SEC's own rules and register as Investment Advisers under the Act of 1940. The level playing field has always been the way of American fairness and honesty.
S. K. Lazear