The story of David and Goliath is usually told when someone who is facing daunting odds and isn’t supposed to win does just that — wins.
Whether it’s an underrated Cinderella story in March Madness, the Cubs and the World Series — if they ever get there again — or when Wall Street actually loses to “we the people.” These stories are sadly all too few. But today we scored one for the little guy: The Obama administration finalized the proposed conflict of interest regulation, which will require advisers to always put the interests of their clients first. It seems like common sense, but until now it wasn’t the law of the land — proving that common sense is not that common after all.
Fortunately, in this case, common sense has prevailed and will help protect people from an estimated $17 billion lost to conflicted advice every year.
Once the regulation goes into effect, we have the ability to go to a financial adviser and trust that the advice that they provide is in our best interest, all the time. Because at the core of any type of advisory situation, you want to know that you can trust that person. And while not all advisers are untrustworthy, the ones that are can no longer hide behind this loophole. At the end of the day, it’s your money and it’s your future. You tirelessly focus on trying to get ahead, maybe even retire someday. You should be able to invest your hard-earned money with the confidence that your investments are in your own best interest — because you earned it. We heard this refrain across the country, as more than 26,300 individuals sent in petitions to the Department of Labor and Capitol Hill urging action on this loophole. Another 100,000-plus committed AARP activists contacted their members of Congress in support of action. Their efforts have paid off.
So, yes, we are taking a moment to celebrate this victory for millions of Americans.
It’s this type of situation that brings out a large theme that we hear during election years — that the system is broken or stacked against the little guy. I’m not saying that the system is completely fixed — we have a long way to go before that can be said. But David has now reminded Goliath who was really in charge of people’s money — the people. Today, millions of Americans across this country can finally trust that our money stays just that — ours.