Fiduciary Responsibilities of Brokers

This from Seeking Alpha Wall Street Breakfast, Aug 19th:
<The Department of Labor will hold four days of public hearings this week to discuss its proposed fiduciary rule, which is aimed at requiring brokers to put client interests ahead of their own when handling retirement money. The DOL asserts that the lack of consumer protection costs investors as much as $17B annually, or 1% of their assets, but the industry says it’s too expansive and would significantly increase liability risk and regulatory costs.

Don’t you just love the industry response? It’s too expensive! In other words, we’ve been ripping off the holders of these retirement accounts to the tune of $17B every year and we have to give that up if we had to put client interest in front of our own. And our liability risk would go up too, lest we’re caught operating in such a way that we fail to act in compliance with our fiduciary responsibilities.

When I was at Big Aerospace my 401K was “professionally managed”. I had no choice - I was not given the option of self direction. And for a while I was stupid enough to park my accounts at Edward Jones. I had nearly everything invested in a number of poorly performing mutual funds.