One of the biggest changes to the American Institute of Architects' standardized contract forms is making insurance and bond provisions an exhibit to agreements. The change streamlines document revision if necessary, an attorney says.
A Nevada Senate bill is moving forward without an amendment to set requirements for outreach to small contractors working on construction of the Raiders football stadium in Las Vegas. The amendment would have clarified that companies must meet state bonding requirements to be involved, and a senator says it would have helped the state reach a 15% threshold for small-business participation.
The Insured Retirement Institute joined other organizations representing financial firms in expressing regret that Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta decided not to grant a further postponement to the effective date of the agency's new fiduciary rule. "We are very disappointed that the entire rule will not be further delayed so a full examination of the rule can be conducted, as directed by President Trump, before it goes into effect," said Cathy Weatherford, IRI's president and chief executive officer.
The fact the Labor Department has decided it doesn't have legal grounds to delay the effective date of its new fiduciary rule beyond June 9 doesn't mean the agency can't change it later, said lawyer Seth Safra. The department has "a lot of authority" to amend the rule or propose an entirely new one as long as it complies with the public notice and comment requirements of the Administrative Procedures Act, he said.
The Labor Department issued a bulletin assuring financial professionals that enforcement of its new fiduciary rule will be limited during a "phased implementation period" that ends Jan. 1. "[T]he Department will not pursue claims against fiduciaries who are working diligently and in good faith to comply with the fiduciary duty rule and exemptions, or treat those fiduciaries as being in violation of the fiduciary duty rule and exemptions," the bulletin said.
Chris Conklin, a licensed agent and fellow of the Society of Actuaries, reviews some of the information that agents and advisors should provide to clients to overcome misleading criticisms of annuities that often appear in advertising.
FSI President and CEO Dale Brown has criticized Labor Secretary R. Alexander Acosta's decision not to delay the Department of Labor's fiduciary rule past June 9. Brown says enforcement "will push the cost of retirement advice and planning services out of the reach of Main Street investors" but promises to "work with Secretary Acosta and Congress and through the legal system to bring clarity to our members."
The Trump administration's budget proposal would cut more than $4 billion from federal employees' retirement benefits, according to the Office of Management and Budget. The proposal would eliminate a cost-of-living adjustment and would require an increase in employee contributions.
Downside Risk Protection, a product from Data Science Partners, aims to aid advisors, institutions and retirement-plan providers by capping losses in all-equity portfolios at 15% annually. This protection decreases the likelihood of retirees outliving assets over 45 years to 4% from almost 15%, CEO Alexander Rinaudo says.
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