The focus on environmental, social and governance (ESG) as a means of creating sustainable value is on the rise. Institutional investors are increasingly considering nonfinancial performance, such as ESG issues, when making investment decisions. The three factors of ESG and the corresponding investment-related sustainability issues are: Environmental – Is the company environmentally responsible? Does the…

The U.S. Department of Labor announced yesterday, April 5, 2017 that it will delay the applicability date of the Fiduciary Rule and related exemptions by 60 days. Under the terms of the extension, advisers to retirement investors will be treated as fiduciaries and have an obligation to give advice that adheres to “impartial conduct standards”…

The DOL Fiduciary Rule (the “Rule”) that will require all advisors to act as fiduciaries with their ERISA clients is rule that was constructed over the course of more than six years by the Obama Administration. Since the Rule was proposed in April 2015, it has been vehemently opposed by many Republicans who believe it…

2016 was a year of increased regulations and record enforcement actions against Investment Advisors/Investment Companies and Broker Dealers. The SEC brought 868 enforcement actions and assessed more than $4 billion in disgorgement and penalties. FINRA assessed $145 million in fines and $41 million in restitution.  Promises of deregulation and a new administration in the White…

Yesterday, at the direction of President Obama, the Department of Labor (Department) released its final fiduciary rule which it believes will better protect consumers. The rule is expected to have a dramatic impact on the financial industry. First, the rule expands the definition of who is deemed a fiduciary under the Employee Retirement Income Security…

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