The House Financial Services Committee today approved Congresswoman Ann Wagner's (MO-2) Retail Investor Protection Act by a bipartisan vote of 44-13. Congresswoman Wagner issued the following statement regarding the passage of this legislation:
"I am pleased that the Financial Services Committee approved the Retail Investor Protection Act today with a strong bipartisan vote. This bill would ensure that retail investors -- families and individuals around the country -- are not harmed by misguided regulations coming out of Washington. With the Department of Labor (DOL) and Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) headed towards massive rulemakings that could impact the ability of retail investors to get financial advice, Congress must step in to ensure that federal agencies do not harm the very people they are trying to protect. Today's vote was an important first step in that direction, and I look forward to working with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to advance this legislation."
Background on the Retail Investor Protection Act:
Both the Department of Labor (DOL) and Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) have indicated they are moving forward with rulemakings that would expand "fiduciary" responsibilities to more financial professionals. Many commentators have expressed concerns that these rulemakings could increase costs and limit availability of products and advice for retail investors, especially those with low or moderate incomes.
The Retail Investor Protection Act includes the following provisions:
Prohibits the Department of Labor from issuing new fiduciary rules until 60 days after the SEC finalizes a rule.
Requires the SEC to identify whether expanded fiduciary standards would result in less access to financial products and services for retail investors; also requires that the SEC submit formal findings that any final rule would reduce retail investor confusion over standards of care that apply to brokers and advisers.
Articles discussing the bill: