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August 14, 2015

Retirement firms, protecting their conflicts of interest, take to the airwaves

“The industry, naturally, treats this as the end of civilization as we know it. During a four-day hearing by the Department of Labor this week, an industry lobbyist fretted that “the new conflict of interest and fiduciary definition rules will generate uncertainty, cost and potential liability.” The life insurance industry warned that the rules would prevent customers from continuing “to enjoy the access they currently have to certain financial products.”

“Well, yes. Customers would lose access to retirement products with hidden fees and conflicts of interest that cost them money.

“Consumer advocates, by contrast, are all for the change. Dennis Kelleher, a former corporate lawyer who now heads Better Markets, a watchdog group, praises the proposal as one that would mean that “tens of billions of retirement dollars stay in Americans’ pockets and not be moved into Wall Street’s profits. That is why Wall Street will not stop trying to kill the rule it hoped the American people would never see.”

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Read the full LA Times article by Michael Hiltzik here.

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