Forget the Fiduciary Rule

But there still will be ways investors can require their advisers to put their interests first.

(Image credit: demaerre)

So much for the fiduciary rule—a signature achievement of the Obama administration that is designed to eliminate conflicts of interest in the brokerage industry and help investors achieve higher returns. The incoming Trump administration is almost certain to scuttle the rule as part of its war on regulation. But even if the rule is killed, its mere injection into the public’s consciousness will still likely turn out to be a plus for investors.

President Obama’s Department of Labor issued the rule. It would require all financial firms to act as fiduciaries when providing products and services for clients’ retirement accounts. Fiduciaries must treat each client’s account with the same care and judgment as they would treat their own investments.

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Steven Goldberg
Contributing Columnist,
Steve has been writing for Kiplinger's for more than 25 years. As an associate editor and then senior associate editor, he covered mutual funds for Kiplinger's Personal Finance magazine from 1994-2006. He also authored a book, But Which Mutual Funds? In 2006 he joined with Jerry Tweddell, one of his best sources on investing, to form Tweddell Goldberg Investment Management to manage money for individual investors. Steve continues to write a regular column for and enjoys hearing investing questions from readers. You can contact Steve at 301.650.6567 or