SYLVANIA, Ohio, April 14, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- There's a saying that when your house is in order, company can come over at any time, so when the Department of Labor (DoL) released its controversial final rule that will impose fiduciary requirements on anyone who receives compensation for providing investment advice to retirement plan and IRA account holders, the leadership and team at SJS Investment Services had the welcome mat out and the door wide open.
SJS was established as a Registered Independent Advisory (RIA) firm from its 1995 inception. For 21 years, SJS has been working, as the Department of Labor stated in their ruling, "with care and undivided loyalty" to clients – in other words, putting the clients first. The DoL in their statement emphasized the "importance of the final rule's consumer protections and the significance of the continuing monetary harm to retirement investors" without the changes.
"SJS Investment Services believes that all those providing investment advice should serve as fiduciaries," said Kevin Kelly, SJS Investment Services president. But he warns that just checking the regulatory box doesn't guarantee advisors are acting in their clients' best interest. Kelly said, "It still comes down to relationships and a culture of responsibility."
Firms just embarking upon a fiduciary way of doing business may have a rough go because their businesses may not be operationally, financially, and culturally set up for the shift. SJS founder and CEO, Scott Savage, explained, "Advisors who aren't currently fiduciaries may find themselves in a world where the rewards of good work take more time. Those who got into this industry lured by big sales commissions rather than to help people can't be happy about this rule."
SJS has been in the forefront when it comes to taking care of people. The firm's MarketPlus Investing® process marries a major money center investment experience with the small-town values of people first. The firm continues to build its operations and culture on educating clients and providing them information when, where, and how they want it.
The new rules may be, in the long run, good for investors. In the short run, investors still need to do their homework when selecting an investment advisory partner. Now that, by law, any advisor who provides retirement plan or IRA advice is supposed to act in the clients' best interest, how can retirement investors be sure? SJS suggests asking yourself these questions and looking for "yes" answers:
- Did you do most of the talking and the advisor most of the listening in the first meeting?
- Were you able to arrive at your own conclusions about what to do, and not feel as though you were being sold to?
- Did you have enough time for the advisor to fully get to know you and your life?
- Does the advisor practice what he preaches by investing in his own philosophy?
With the caveat of "buyer still beware," Kelly said, "Any regulation that helps with transparency is all well and good. For too long, the bad actors, bad portfolio designs, and plain old bad investments have been able to use 'suitability' as a fig leaf."
Savage added, "And we believe those practices have hurt a lot of people. Rules alone won't sanitize Wall Street. It makes sense to look first at the firms who have had their houses in order from the start."
About SJS Investment Services
SJS Investment Services is an investment advisory firm that has been advising people, families, organizations and communities, managing their assets, and in general being there for them since 1995. The firm accomplishes this through its proprietary process called MarketPlus Investing and by putting people first in all they do. SJS Investment Services works nationwide and serves individual investors, institutional investors, corporations, financial institutions, and public entities. The company is headquartered in Sylvania, Ohio. For more information, visit SJSinvest.com.
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SOURCE SJS Investment Services