One of the leading trade bodies of the brokerage industry has just put out an alarming, and frankly logical, warning. SIFMA says that a growing body of regulation is threatening to completely end the brokerage industry as we know it. In particular, SIFMA says the rise of state-based fiduciary rules is likely to lead to the “lowest common denominator” regulatory solution in many states. Instead of trying to navigate a complex network of rules, the solution is simply to say “we do not have brokerage in our state”. Many states may only have advisory accounts, which according to SIFMA will mean "Clients will have one choice they can buy, which in many cases will be buying more services than they wanted and having to pay more than they wanted to”.
FINSUM: So anyone in the industry will realize that trade bodies put out warnings all the time. What makes this different is that it seems highly realistic, which makes it quite troubling. The reality is that for many clients brokerage is the right model, so it needs to be defended.