LAKE OSWEGO, Ore.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Fiduciary Benchmarks (FBi) announced today the firm's launch of the first service in its Suite of IRA offerings. The IRA Rollover Best Interest Determination service launched with its first client on June 1st, a week in advance of the Fiduciary Rule’s June 9th implementation date. Additional services will be added to the suite in the coming months and include: IRA benchmarking, level fee vs. commission analysis and additional compliance workflows.
In one of the largest changes to the financial services industry in the last 50 years, it is now required that all recommendations made to investors regarding their IRAs meet a Fiduciary standard of care. To do so, financial services firms must have processes in place to consider the specific needs and preferences of an investor, as well as the options available to them, when recommending a rollover from a 401(k) plan to an IRA or a transfer from one IRA to another. While the Trump Administration casted doubt on whether this Obama Administration rule would become effective – compliance by Banks, Broker/Dealers, Mutual Funds and Investment Advisors was required starting midnight June 9th, 2017.
“We converted our first client on 6/1 and look forward to helping others in the financial services industry comply using a structured, logical and cost-effective solution,” stated Tom Kmak, CEO.
The prior uncertainty around this regulation has left many financial services firms with cobbled together solutions – often using cumbersome and potentially risk-prone manual processes to achieve compliance. Others find themselves in the precarious position of not having a solution in place and instead are hoping for a repeal of the regulation – which is an uncertain stance at best. In both cases, Fiduciary Benchmarks can quickly and cost effectively assist these organizations in implementing a solution for compliance with the Rule.
“While change is often difficult – opportunities to enhance investor relationships occur when investors know that you are taking the diligent steps needed to consider their best interest,” stated Craig Rosenthal, SVP of Advisor Sales & Service.
Leveraging our industry leading 401(k) Benchmarking System, FBi has built a website to collect information related to the investor, as well as service and fee data related to any 401(k) plan or IRA that is being considered. A whitepaper provided by Drinker Biddle, available on Fiduciary Benchmarks’ website, details this process which considers services and fees to help financial services firms and individual advisors to comply with this expansive new regulation.
Some of the features of the system include: electronic surveys for use in collecting required investor profile and preference data, guides and tools to collect required 401(k) plan data for rollover recommendations, and templates to define IRA services and fees for ease of use and re-use.
“Our web based IRA application can be set up and ready for use in as little as one day for individual advisors/small firms or within a week or two for larger companies. In addition, the system does not require a large technology effort for implementation,” stated Matt Golda, SVP of Technology and Operations.
While the tool was initially developed to help comply with the DOL Fiduciary Rule, it can also be used to follow FINRA Regulatory Notice 13-45 when analyzing rollovers. For the vast majority of Advisors already working in their clients’ best interest, the tool can help document that their recommendations are in the best interest of their clients. The tool also offers full compliance reporting and workflow oversight.
About Fiduciary Benchmarks: Fiduciary Benchmarks is the industry leader for independent, comprehensive, informative and cost-effective benchmarking services for the defined contribution space and has leveraged its existing patented method and technology to bring a robust and easy-to-use solution to the IRA marketplace. Founded in 2007, the company now works with many of the industry’s largest and most respected Recordkeepers, Broker/Dealers, Advisor/Consultants and Plan Sponsors.
Learn more at www.fiduciarybenchmarks.com.