Ameriprise Financial Inc. Chief Executive Officer Jim Cracchiolo is looking for chances to add financial advisors as new government regulation on retirement products pressures smaller rivals.
“During this period of disruption, we see potential opportunities,” Cracchiolo said Thursday during a conference call discussing first-quarter results. “The regulatory environment will likely lead to consolidation within the industry, which we already see. Independent advisors or independent broker-dealers may lack the resources or the scale to navigate the changes required, and seek a strong partner like Ameriprise.”
The Department of Labor announced new rules on April 6 that are designed to protect savers from conflicted investment advice. Companies including American International Group Inc. and MetLife Inc. have been exiting advisory operations ahead of implementation of the rules, which will require additional compliance costs and could increase the risk of lawsuits. The changes could be even more burdensome to independent firms.
Ameriprise has about 400 people devoted to handling the rule and will increase training for staff, the CEO said. The asset manager had 9,766 advisors at the end of the first quarter, after hiring 70 in the period, the company said Wednesday in a statement.