WASHINGTON, D.C.—Dennis Kelleher, President and CEO, issued the following statement in connection with President Biden’s announcement of a Department of Labor (DOL) rule to eliminate junk fees in retirement advice:
“Americans for too long have been ripped off by junk fees from hotels and car rentals to airlines and, yes, retirement advice. However, junk fees in retirement advice are much more insidious because, unlike some other fees added to consumers’ bills, these fees and costs are not disclosed. Worse, retirement savers don’t even know their advisers can steer them to investment products that line the adviser’s pockets with huge commissions and fees but perform poorly or present too much risk. That happens because retirement advisors have conflicts of interest where they can put their own interests above the best interest of their clients even when investing their client’s own money! That is wrong and we applaud President Biden for standing with American’s trying to save for retirement and for acting to end these conflicts and rip offs.
“Anyone providing retirement advice should be required to act in their clients’ best interests. All Americans struggling to save for a decent retirement need and deserve that protection. Otherwise, the fees and costs, poor returns, and even losses from conflicted investment recommendations will continue to come directly out of the paychecks and pockets of Americans, many of whom struggle to pay their bills and often have little if anything left over to save for retirement. That’s why there’s a retirement crisis in this country and why conflicted financial advisors should not be able to make that crisis worse by enriching themselves with money that should benefit America’s savers.
“That’s wrong and today’s announced rule will end that and protect savers, promote retirement security, and enable fair competition.”
Better Markets is a non-profit, non-partisan, and independent organization founded to promote the public interest in the financial markets, support the financial reform of Wall Street and make our financial system work for all Americans again. Better Markets works with allies—including many in finance—to promote pro-market, pro-business and pro-growth policies that help build a stronger, safer financial system that protects and promotes Americans’ jobs, savings, retirements and more. To learn more, visit www.bettermarkets.org.