PITTSBURGH, June 13, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- fi360, the premier organization for fiduciary education, investment analytics, support services and industry insights for financial professionals, today announced the findings of a collaborative survey fielded in partnership with AdvisorOne.com, the online news and analysis site for all advisors. This is the second year that fi360 and AdvisorOne have collaborated on the survey.
Fielded in March and April of 2012, the survey was completed by 380 advisors across the wide spectrum of advisor business models and affiliations. The survey not only sought advisors' opinions on the fiduciary standard but also gauged their understanding of what the fiduciary standard means now, or would mean in the future, to their businesses.
Highlights of survey findings include:
- Investors don't understand the differences between brokers and investment advisors.
- Most advisors believe that extension of the fiduciary standard to brokers would help restore investor confidence.
The survey also determined that advisors believe that extending the fiduciary standard:
- Would not cost investors more for advice.
- Would not limit access to advice or products.
- Would not price investors out of the market for advice.
Regarding the extension of ERISA fiduciary duty to those advising 401(k) or IRA investors, the survey found:
- The majority of survey participants agree with the Department of Labor proposal to extend the stringent ERISA fiduciary duty to more advisors.
- This majority extends even to the question of fiduciary duty for those advising on money coming out of 401(k)s and IRAs—long considered to be an area of vulnerability for many investors.
"That support for the fiduciary standard is coming from registered reps and investment advisors across the spectrum of business models demonstrates that the majority of professionals understand that putting the best interests of their clients first is in their long-term best interests as well and has become a competitive necessity," said Blaine Aikin, President of fi360. "Last year's survey provided a wealth of data and we were thrilled to be fielding this survey in partnership with AdvisorOne again this year."
The goal of the survey was to gain a greater awareness of how advisors feel about the timely topic of fiduciary relationships. In addition, survey findings are providing a wealth of information about what advisors believe with regard to the most contentious issues surrounding extension of the fiduciary status to all financial service providers who render advice: compensation issues, enforcement and where there is consensus or disagreement among brokers and investment advisors. The key findings of the advisor survey are on AdvisorOne.com now, in Key Findings, Pending or Potential Regulation and Behind the Numbers: Trends. In addition, the comprehensive report of survey findings is available now, in "Trustworthy Advice: Is the Fiduciary Standard the New Normal for Financial Advisors?"
"The regulators may still be pondering whether and how to impose a fiduciary standard on advice givers," said Jamie Green, group editorial director for Summit Business Media's AdvisorOne, "but advisors aren't waiting for direction from above; they're already putting their client's interests first, whether or not they have a legal obligation to do so."
fi360 offers a comprehensive approach to investment fiduciary education, practice management and support that has established them as the go-to source for investment fiduciary insights. With substantiated Practices as the foundation, fi360 offers world-class fiduciary Training/Education, Tools and Resources that are essential for fiduciaries and those who provide services to fiduciaries to effectively and successfully manage their roles and responsibilities. fi360 assists those who rely on their fiduciary education programs, professional AIF® and AIFA® designations, Web-based analytical and reporting software and resources to achieve success. For more information about fi360, please visit www.fi360.com or Twitter: @fiduciary360.
AdvisorOne.com provides daily news, analysis, commentary, market data, tools and networking opportunities for advisors of all kinds who need to stay informed to transform their businesses and their bottom lines. AdvisorOne is the premiere online destination of Summit Business Media's Investment Advisory Group, which includes Investment Advisor and Research magazines.