Wealth Management

(Washington)

There is a lot of excitement right now about the possibility of the new capital gains tax cut. The Treasury is looking into whether to effectively cut the capital gains tax rate by allowing investors to account for inflation when reporting their gains. The cut is estimated to amount to $100 bn over the next decade. However, the Treasury is uncertain if it has the authority to make the cuts on its own, a move it would undertake by simply redefining the meaning of “cost”.


FINSUM: So evidently the first Bush administration looked into this in the early 90s and decided that the Treasury did not have the legal authority to make this change on its own.

(Washington)

The US broker community is currently growing increasingly concerned about the SEC’s new “Regulation Best Interest”. On top of anger over the rules governing the use of titles, brokers have become increasingly worried about a part of the SEC rule which essentially mirrors the DOL’s best interest contract exemption (BICE). The problem is that there are rules governing conflicts of interest that are very similar to the DOL’s, such as brokers having to take steps to resolve conflicts, and minimize compensation incentives for certain products. According to one lawyer representing brokerages, “We believe the commission should replace the DOL rule-based preamble provisions on mitigation and elimination of conflicts with a simple principles-based statement”.


FINSUM: When the rule was first debuted, the general industry reaction was positive. However, the more everyone has dug into it, the more stringent the opposition has become.

(New York)

Anyone who owns or works for an RIA will probably be aware of the huge boom in M&A in the sector. There seem to be many willing buyers of RIAs at the moment and the acquisition terms for such deals have been getting increasingly sweet. However, within the apparent euphoria, make sure you don’t make a bad decision. For instance, some RIAs might be seeing offers with good valuations, but all in stock of the buyer. There have been a lot of unsolicited purchase offers, which may characterize “an unsophisticated, stupid buyer who is just trying to grab assets”, according to on managing partner at an RIA speaking at a Pershing industry conference. RIAs need to beware because “[Buyers] aren’t just overpaying but may also overpromise and not be able to deliver”.


FINSUM: We suppose the old mantra is best here— if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

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