August 24, 2010
This is to urge the SEC to retain the current suitability standards for Investment Adviser Representatives, rather than substituting the fiduciary standard. I believe this is in the best interest of the client and provides robust supervision of my activities as an IAR. I currently hold my Series 7, 6, 63, 22 and 65 registrations and am appointed an IAR with MMLISI RIA. Each year I must comply with both industry continuing education requirements and RIA requirements. For example, I just completed seven distinct training classes to remain compliant with MMLISI firm element, regulatory element, AML training, and course electives on 412(e)(3) pension plans and buy-sell agreements.
Clients are already overwhelmed by the amount of paperwork, including disclosures, applications, disclaimers, and other information that are part of the current regulatory regime. Adding additional supervision will likely complicate this even further. I am a firm advocate of protecting clients through full and proper disclosure, but sincerely believe our current standards fulfill that responsibility to clients.
Additionally, clients currently have flexibility in pricing models (fees, commissions, deferred sales charges, etc.) to find the one that best suits their needs and temperament. I believe the fiduciary standard would reduce customer choice.
I hope you will act with restraint in this area. Thank you for yoru attention