August 24, 2010
I have been a registered representative of a broker dealer, licensed to market only mututal funds and limited partnerships under series 6 and 22, for the past 25 years. In all that time, I have assisted hundreds of individuals and small companies in diversifying their investments using an appropriate mix of mutual funds. As a registered representative, compensated by commissions, I have always been held to a strict accountability standard--required to know my customer and make reccomendations appropriate to their circumsatnce. Also in that twenty five years, I have never had an investor complain to me, to my broker dealer, or to any regulatory authority about my recomendations or their sutiabiltiy.
Under current regulations, I am required to report all of my securities related activities monthly to my broker dealer, which carefully monitors my activity to insure its compliance with multiple levels of rules. Additionally, every sale that I effect with my broker dealer is scrutinized and I am required to submit a suitabiltiy report, signed by the client, that my broker dealer uses to determine if the purchase is consistent with the client's personal circumstances.
There is already plenty of federal and state regulation of broker dealers and their registered representatives. The public will not be served by abandoning the current suitability rules and substituting the more stringent fiduciary standard.
The buying public will be no better protected, and many registered representatives, including me, will be forced to abandon this part of their services to their clients. The addtional recordkeeping and reporting that will be imposed on me will necessitate my relinquishing my license to market securites.
The net effect of this will be that my hundreds of satisfied clients will now be forced to receive their investment guidance and advice from the internet.
There are literally millions of small investors in our country that depend on the counsel and advice of thousands of registered representatives like me, that will lose their access to experienced, capable, and ethical advice it this standard is imposed on this part of the market
Thank you for your consideration.