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Group appeals decision upholding N.Y. best-interest standard

The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of New York is appealing a decision by acting Albany County Supreme Court Justice Henry Zwack that upholds a state best-interest standard for the sale of annuities and life insurance. Some major insurers have stopped selling annuities in New York as a result of…

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7 states, D.C. sue to stop SEC broker-recommendation rule

Seven states and the District of Columbia have asked a US court to strike down a rule from the Securities and Exchange Commission that lets brokers recommend products that benefit the broker as long as conflicts of interest are disclosed to clients. The plaintiffs say in their court filing the…

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Judge rejects challenge to N.Y. annuity sales rule

A New York judge has upheld the legality of an annuity sales rule, which was challenged in a lawsuit brought by the New York chapter of the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors and the Independent Insurance Agents and Brokers of New York. Following the ruling, Gary Sanders, vice…

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Fed expected to cut main rate by quarter point

Markets and observers expect the Federal Reserve to reduce its benchmark interest rate by one-quarter percentage point today. This would mark the first cut since 2008 and the fifth time in 25 years the central bank has switched from increasing to decreasing rates. The Wall Street Journal

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Banks at odds with markets over Fed rate outlook

Investment banks remain skeptical that the Federal Reserve will reduce interest rates this summer, despite markets having priced one in. Goldman Sachs says the “hurdle for such [rate] cuts is likely to be higher than widely believed,” while UBS says a decrease is contingent on the unlikely event the US…

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3 states continue work on proposed fiduciary standards

New Jersey, Massachusetts and Nevada are proceeding with proposals for a fiduciary standard, despite passage of the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Regulation Best Interest. Industry groups continue to oppose state fiduciary rules, citing concern that the rules would limit investor access to advice, particularly for low- and middle-income investors. Financial…

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Exec: Fiduciary battle might continue at state level

The Securities and Exchange Commission has approved Regulation Best Interest, but Tom Nally, president of TD Ameritrade Institutional, says he is worried states will try to impose a higher fiduciary standard on advisors. “We’re concerned about there being 52 standards out there,” Nally says.

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US trade policies may prompt Fed to cut rates, banks say

Major banks say US trade policies will weaken the economy enough to force the Federal Reserve to cut interest rates. The two-year Treasury yield fell 14 basis points Friday to 1.92% after President Donald Trump threatened tariffs on Mexican goods if the country does not help curb illegal immigration to…

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IRS updates 2020 mortality tables for defined-benefit plans

The IRS has released updated static mortality tables and mortality improvement rates. The data are intended to be used by defined-benefit retirement plans for funding targets and valuation calculations during 2020. PlanAdviser online

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FINRA might drop suitability rule in favor of Reg BI

When the Securities and Exchange Commission adopts Regulation Best Interest, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority will revise or eliminate its suitability rule, said Robert Colby, FINRA’s chief legal officer. Because FINRA will enforce Reg BI, it needs to look at whether there is any reason to keep the suitability rule,…

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