Industry Divided on Impact of DOL Fiduciary Proposal, According to Advisors Polled at Pioneer Investments Webinar

BOSTON--()--Pioneer Investments (“Pioneer”) announced today the results of a live webinar poll designed to capture advisors’ outlook on the impact of the New Fiduciary Proposal issued by the Department of Labor (DOL). The online event was attended by 875 financial advisors and featured commentary and analysis by subject matter experts. Advisors were polled on questions related to whether the new rule would help, hurt, or be a non-event for their business and for investors.

When asked about the impact of the new rule on their business, 38 percent of advisors polled indicated that it would hurt their business and negatively impact profitability, while 27 percent indicated that it would help their business by leveling the playing field on retirement advice. Twenty-one percent indicated that the rules would be a non-event for their business, and 14 percent were unsure of the impact.

“It’s interesting to see that while most advisors believe that this will hurt their business, quite a few also think that it will help level the playing field,” said Fred Reish, ERISA attorney at Drinker Biddle & Reath, LLP. Mr. Reish served as a panelist on the webinar, along with Blaine Aikin, Chief Executive Officer at fi360.

In terms of the impact on investors, 42 percent of advisors polled believe that the new rule would hurt investors by raising costs and limiting the availability of advice. Thirty-two percent believe that the rule would help investors, and that putting investors’ interests first would drive better outcomes. Eight percent indicated that this would be a non-event, and 18 percent were unsure of the impact on investors.

“The potential for these rules to increase costs and make services less available for smaller accounts was a hot topic of debate even before they were released. The results of this poll demonstrate that, as advisors see and hear more, these concerns linger in the minds of many. Here again though, almost as many foresee either positive or neutral outcomes,” added Mr. Aikin.

When asked how the fiduciary proposal will affect their IRA rollover business, 42 percent of advisors expect that it will have little to no impact and 28 percent expect a moderate to high negative impact. Only 11 percent indicated that there would be a moderate to high positive impact on their IRA rollover business as a result of the proposal, and 19 percent did not know.

“A key takeaway here is that there are divergent viewpoints on this rule amongst advisors,” said Mark Spina, Executive Vice President and Head of U.S. Intermediary Distribution at Pioneer Investments. “We firmly believe in the value of advisors, and hence in the importance of providing education and encouraging debate surrounding the new fiduciary proposal.”

Note to Editors

The webinar, titled “The New Fiduciary Proposal...It’s out and we’re talking about it,” was hosted by Pioneer on April 30, 2015 in partnership with Empower, fi360 and Drinker Biddle & Reath, LLP. Panelists included Fred Reish, ERISA attorney at Drinker Biddle & Reath, LLP, and Blaine Aikin, Chief Executive Officer at fi360. Bob Holcomb, Executive Director, Legislative Industry Affairs at Empower Retirement moderated the discussion, and Bill Harmon, Senior Vice President and National Sales Manager, Core Markets at Empower Retirement provided introductions. Pioneer is not affiliated with Empower, fi360, or Drinker Biddle & Reath, LLP.

The 875 financial advisors who joined the event were representative of a diverse group, including wirehouse, broker-dealer and independent advisory business models. Of the 875 participants, 417 were registered investment advisors (RIA). Retirement plan AUM of those in attendance ranged from $1M to more than $100M, and advisors from all 50 U.S. states joined the event.

About Pioneer Investments

Founded in 1928, Pioneer Investments is a leading global asset manager with a history of providing innovative investment products to investors worldwide. The firm offers a diverse range of products and services across traditional and non-traditional asset classes for a wide range of clients, including institutional investors, wealth management firms, financial advisors, and private investors.

Pioneer Investments is the trade name for Pioneer Global Asset Management S.p.A. (PGAM) and its subsidiaries, a global investment firm with offices in 28 countries and approximately $242 billion in assets under management as of March 31, 2015, of which approximately $71 billion was managed in the U.S. Pioneer Investment Management USA Inc. is the North American operating subsidiary of PGAM, a wholly-owned subsidiary of UniCredit S.p.A.

©2015 Pioneer Investment Management USA Inc.
60 State Street, Boston, MA 02109
Member of the UniCredit Group, Register of Banking Groups


Pioneer Investments
Geoff Smith, 617-422-4758


Pioneer Investments
Geoff Smith, 617-422-4758