Besides continuing to focus on cybersecurity and elder financial fraud, worries about whether the SEC’s Investor Advisory Committee will continue to exist in 2017, and if the Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule is an investor protection issue, loomed over the IAC’s Thursday meeting in Washington.
David Blass, general counsel for the Investment Company Institute, told members of the Committee during its meeting at SEC headquarters in Washington that DOL’s fiduciary rule “is going to be harmful to investors,” and that evidence of such harm is already being shown in “orphaned” 401(k) accounts. The rule “should be revised and harmonized” with an SEC rule, he said.
IAC’s chairman, Kurt Schacht, chairman and managing director of the CFA Institute, wondered during the meeting if the incoming Trump administration, which he noted has vowed to take a “relook” at the Dodd-Frank Act, would do away with the committee in the New Year.
The IAC, created under Dodd-Frank, “has been an excellent experiment,” Schacht said. “Save the IAC.”
A new calendar year along with a new administration also marks “a new era for this agency,” Schacht added.
Dodd-Frank authorizes the IAC to submit findings and recommendations for review and consideration by the Commission.
SEC Chairwoman Mary Jo White noted during her comments at the meeting the “tremendous asset” the IAC has been during her tenure as head of the agency, adding that “it is worth reminding ourselves of your critical purpose as we are ending this calendar year.”
White, who will leave her post in January, noted that “it is important that the Commission and the Committee continue to work together to address the issues facing investors” into 2017.