Circuit Court Fiduciary Rule Decisions Raise Important Process Questions

While the Fifth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has vacated the DOL fiduciary rule expansion, one attorney warns the rule is still technically in effect, at the very least until the court issues a “mandate” opening a limited period during which the Department of Labor can choose to contest the decision; he also questions whether the circuit courts are in fact split on the matter, as some are suggesting.

Will SCOTUS Decide the Fate of the DOL Fiduciary Rule?

Some ERISA attorneys argue the Fifth Circuit decision last week to vacate entirely the DOL’s fiduciary rule expansion makes a Supreme Court decision on the matter inevitable; others are less sure that a decisive SCOTUS decision could be forthcoming, instead expecting the SEC to take the lead; still others admit they have little idea how the regulatory picture will shake out, recommending patience and ongoing compliance.

Wells Fargo Advisors SEC Filing Hints at Federal Fiduciary Investigation

The firm says it does not have additional information to share at this juncture beyond what has been noted in a 2017 year-end SEC filing; in that newly emerged document, Wells Fargo Advisors says it has begun an internal investigation into “whether there have been inappropriate referrals or recommendations” made by its advisors, including with respect to rollovers for 401(k) plan participants.

FINRA Rep Monitoring Rule Change Could Trigger RIA Compensation Renegotiation

The regulator is reassessing its requirements for RIAs to monitor the outside business activities of their reps; one experts argues it is likely that, if the final rule reflects the proposed rule, many plan advisers who serve plans through an independent RIA (as opposed to the broker/dealer’s “corporate” RIA) will seek to renegotiate their compensation arrangements relating to their independent RIA revenue.

A Passionate Defense of ESG Investing from Connecticut Treasurer

While the investing rules controlling the Connecticut public pension fund are different from those governing corporate retirement plans, the argumentation as to why gun manufacturer divestment may be the right thing to do offers some food for thought for anyone charged with the fiduciary management of retirement plan assets.

Court Finds ERISA Does Not Preempt Illinois Slayer Statute

The 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals quoted a Supreme Court decision which said “the principle underlying the statutes—which have been adopted by nearly every State—is well established in the law and has a long historical pedigree predating ERISA.”

P-Solve Report Questions Some Common TDF Manager Practices

“While appropriate for some participants, heavy reliance on equities is almost certainly not suitable for as many 401(k) participants as the allocation of the largest TDF managers suggests,” P-Solve argues. “TDFs are built mainly for favorable economic and market environments.”

2018 Plan Sponsor of the Year Finalists

The Plan Sponsor of the Year annual award program recognizes retirement plan sponsors that show a commitment to their participants’ financial health and retirement success. The award is given in many categories to recognize all plan types. Please note that in order to view the finalists, you must be a registered user of PLANADVISER.com. It's free and takes just a minute to complete.