The new Congress presents obstacles and opportunities for the financial advisory industry, writes Dale Brown, president and CEO of the Financial Services Institute, citing issues such as appropriations funding and the influence of the election on key committees. FSI is "committed to ensuring that the positive, productive direction of FSI's advocacy mission will continue through this period of political change," Brown writes.
Most Americans claim Social Security early or upon reaching full retirement age, often for health-related reasons or because they need the money to live on, a survey finds. John Shoven, Ph.D.; Sita Nataraj Slavov, Ph.D.; and David Wise, Ph.D., looked at the reasons and implications for claiming early and what can be learned about early claimers.
John Crosby, president of FPA's New Jersey chapter, wants regulators to clarify which designations would be used for financial planners under the state's proposed fiduciary rule. "FPA proposes to limit designations to only those that are granted by accredited certifying bodies and, at a minimum, include rigorous ethical and professional standards, thorough education and examination requirements to first obtain the designation, and ongoing continuing education requirements to maintain the certification," he testified Monday at a New Jersey Bureau of Securities hearing.
Brokers' sales of funds paying "unusually high excess loads" declined after the Labor Department proposed its fiduciary rule in 2015, says a report from Morningstar. "This reduction in the distortionary effect of conflicted payments suggests that firms put in place effective policies and procedures to mitigate conflicts of interest in response to the DOL rule," the report says.
Debt held by US households increased to a record $13.51 trillion in the third quarter, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. The amount is 21% more than the total in Q3 of 2008, during the financial crisis.
Millennials hope to retire at age 56 on average, but they think they'll be able to save only about half of what they need for retirement, finds a Provision Living survey. Fifty-three percent of millennial respondents expect to work a part-time job after they retire.
Recent stock-market volatility is causing concern among some older workers and retirees, who experienced the 2008 stock market crash and worry what a similar event would do to their retirement savings. However, Paul Kelash of Allianz Life Insurance says he has not seen evidence of people making significant changes to their retirement plans.
Activist investors in Europe are moving out of the consumer and energy stocks and into major industrials, according to a report from Alvarez & Marsal. A&M's London managing director, Malcolm McKenzie, said private equity funds were looking to target group companies with underperforming assets where they could force through disposals.
Fears that a slowing exchange-traded funds market and General Electric's debt woes indicate a bubble is about to burst are missing the point, one analyst says. TS Lombard's Dario Perkins says that with the US economy continuing to perform, corporate debt is likely to remain affordable as the Federal Reserve considers further rate rises.