As anticipated, the Department of Labor sent late Thursday its rule to redefine fiduciary on retirement advice to the Office of Management and Budget for its mandatory review.
Arrival of the rule, formally the Conflict of Interest Rule — Investment Advice, was announced on OMB’s website Friday morning. If put through an expedited review of what industry observers say would likely last 50 days, rather than the typical 90-day review, that would mean DOL would issue the rule before April.
Labor Secretary Thomas Perez had said on a late Monday call with reporters that DOL hopes its rule to change the definition of fiduciary under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act will “reach a conclusion in the coming months.”
The proposed rule set out an eight-month compliance date. After release of the final rule, Congress has 60 legislative days to adopt a joint resolution of disapproval, if it opposes the regulation. President Barack Obama would likely veto such a resolution.
Rep. Ann Wagner, R-Mo., who sponsored H.R.1090, the Retail Investor Protection Act, which would stop progress on DOL’s rule until the Securities and Exchange Commission writes its own fiduciary rule, said late Thursday afternoon that her fight against DOL’s rule “is far from over.” She vowed to continue pushing her bill, passed by the House, which she said would “preserve low- and middle-income Americans’ access to sound investment advice.”
American families, Wagner said, “are already facing a savings crisis and the president’s insistence on pushing this rule forward will only make the problem worse.” DOL, she continued, “has ignored Congress, thumbed its nose at the thousands of Americans who have expressed concerns about the impact this rule will have on family savings and jobs, and has charged blindly forward with this executive overreach.”