Wealth Management


For the last several months, brokerage firms have been preparing for the implementation of the SEC’s Reg BI, which comes into effect next Tuesday (June 30th). The driving force behind the rule has been the SEC’s current chief, Jay Clayton. However, those paying attention will have seen that the whole Reg BI project was throw in doubt this week as President Trump has just nominated Clayton to be the US Attorney for the Southern District of New York. Clayton is apparently interested in the role. This raises serious questions about how seriously the rule will be enforced as the entire rule was basically Clayton’s project. According to Phyllis Borzi, who formerly headed the DOL, “It matters in the sense that this [Reg BI] was his baby, he was determined to push it through…”, its “effectiveness” she said “will rise and fall on how well it’s enforced because the rule itself leaves a lot of ambiguity, so it will be critical how it’s implemented”.

FINSUM: If Clayton leaves, it will create a major void for the rule, including, its enforcement, changes, and focus.

(New York)

COVID has affected the wealth management business as deeply as any other industry. Disruption has arrived, but opportunity has also come with it. But how will it impact the recruiting environment? By all accounts, it looks like the next six months or so will be an ideal time for advisors to move networks/companies. Firms are loosening purse strings and are jumping head first into recruiting again as periods of upheaval like COVID have usually led to increased movement among advisors. That means advisors are likely to get bigger checks for moving now than they would have earlier this year. The lack of conferences also means they are putting more money into other efforts to reach advisors.

FINSUM: Generally speaking, the COVID environment seems to have been beneficial for advisors. New efficiencies and work/life balance have been found as a result of working from home; deeper bonds with clients have been formed during the crisis; and there are increasing opportunities for recruiting. The speed of the market recovery has also been beneficial.


Despite some minor discontent, generally speaking the broker-dealer industry has been very tolerant of the new Reg BI. However, those who have been working on compliance and counting their blessings that DOL Rule 1.0 didn’t come into full force could be in for a rude awakening. Many will be aware that Joe Biden is well ahead in national polls at the moment. Polling difficulties aside (of which there are many), the growing risk for the industry is that Biden wins and then quickly moves to cancel Reg BI and install a much stricter rule akin to the first iteration of the DOL Rule. If he were to win the White House and take Congress, he would have wide latitude to undue the current regulatory paradigm. Even without a Congressional win, he would very likely reappoint all the heads of key departments, like the SEC and DOL, which could have a strong effect.

FINSUM: Just as the industry was settling into what looked like it might be a permanent new regulatory environment, things could very messy again. If Trump wins, none of this happens, but given polls it is an increasingly likely possibility.

Page 6 of 68

Contact Us



Subscribe to our daily newsletter

We use cookies to improve our website. By continuing to use this website, you are giving consent to cookies being used. More details…