PHOENIX, ARIZONA — June 2, 2015 — The Department of Labor’s own evidence to support its new fiduciary-only rule actually undermines the DOL’s justification for its unwarranted disruption of consumer access to financial assistance from Main Street advisors, according to a study released today by the Americans for Annuity Protection.
This lack of substantive evidence exposed in this report shows that the DOL’s arguments “do not justify wiping out Americans’ ability to choose products that meet their needs, and an entire industry providing solutions for those needs,” says Dr. Jack Marrion, co-author who led the study and its research of the DOL’s proposed expansion of the fiduciary standard.
The Americans for Annuity Protection (AAP) supporters and Dr. Marrion were among the only parties to actually study the DOL’s justification and see that the department’s proposal is built on shoddily constructed foundation, however well intended says Kim O’Brien, CEO of AAP.
“The study was necessary to show that the evidence provided to support the DOL proposal is misinterpreted, often misapplied and contradicts the department’s own conclusions,” O’Brien says. “Dr. Marrion’s research and key findings are instrumental to support AAP’s argument that the existing ERISA exemption for the sale of annuities must be retained. This is imperative so that all Americans seeking the certainty and security of annuities have access to affordable, unfettered and professional annuity advisors and annuity advice.”
At a time when Americans are growing more fearful of their retirement financial prospects, this bureaucracy is determined to remove options for ordinary Americans, says AAP Board Chairman Paul Feldman. “I have always believed in the value of annuities to remove the fear and anxiety of outliving our savings with guaranteed income for life and protection from stock market losses,” says Feldman. “This study will help to further our mission to protect America’s savers and their freedom to consider annuities for their security.”
Feldman says when he reviewed Dr. Marrion’s report, he was astounded that the DOL has been able to use such flimsy evidence to threaten a venerable profession that serves ordinary American families.
“People need to know the truth about the DOL’s case,” says Feldman. “Americans are about to lose access to advisors in their hometown and vital tools for their retirement security for no substantiated reason.”
ABOUT Dr. Jack Marrion
Jack Marrion leads the Advantage Compendium, which is a research and consulting service. He has conducted a broad scope of research ranging from the behavioral economic reasons on how consumers make financial decisions to industry impact models. He also serves as a Research Fellow for Webster University. His insights on the annuity and retirement income world have appeared in hundreds of publications including Best’s Review, Business Week, Kiplinger, The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Wall Street Journal.