2019 CFP® Ethics Class Finally Closes Loopholes; Historic Progress For Profession

The progress of civilization is slow and always somehow surprising. So it is with the evolution of the financial planning profession. Six years ago, A4A reported on how CFP Board's standards of conduct opened gaping loopholes in the fiduciary standard. We examined scenarios" like the one shown below published by CFP Board to show the loophole.    Effective October 1, 2019, CFP Board finally closes them with its new ethics standards.  CFP Board requires certificants to learn about the new ethics standards effective October 1, 2018. The new standard and new ethics class are a real p

An Inspiring Addition Among Compliance Consultants

Cory Roberson, founded, an online platform used by 130 RIAs to streamline and organize annual internal compliance reviews.   Cory is teaching the first of four classes about RIA compliance Thursday and you can register for the session here.      Cory is an inspiring new addition to the field of compliance consultants and I made this video you tell A4A members about him. Comments and questions are always appreciated. 

The New Fiduciary Rules: Good Or Bad?
I was happy to hear that the DOL finally approved the new fiduciary rules on investment advice for retirement plans. As an RIA, I’ve always been held to the fiduciary standard—to put the interests of clients first. It’s good to require that of all advisors.

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Annuities And The Fiduciary Rules
I have often written about the “evils of annuities.” In my experience, I have seen annuities sold:   Within retirement accounts – There is no purpose to putting a high cost tax-deferred product into an account that is already tax-deferred. To elderly people – A variable annuity sold to an 80-year old with a 10-year surrender charge just doesn’t make financial sense. To people earmarking the money for a shorter-term purpose – Can you believe an annuity with a 10-year surrender charge was sold to a couple for their 12-year old child&rsq

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Plain-English Translation Of SEC Official's Speech To RIA CCOs
On October 15, Andrew J. "Buddy" Donohue, Chief of Staff at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, put chief compliance officers at Registered Investment Advisers on notice. "If I were a chief compliance officer," said Donohue, a regulator and financial industry executive for nearly 40 years, "I would consider my role in terms of the following categories." According to the SEC transcript of his speech, Donohue ticked off this list:      • Laws, Regulations and other Requirements      • Or