NAFA Eagerly Awaits Conclusive Action from the Trump Administration
President Trump has ushered in a new landscape in Washington, D.C. with his swift actions to pause and undo many policies from the Obama Administration, while setting the stage to deliver on campaign promises. As expected, there was no traditional honeymoon period after President Trump’s inauguration. The partisan jabs and tensions are escalating daily as the new Trump Administration and Republican-controlled Congress work on Cabinet nominations, the SCOTUS vacancy and ACA reform, among other items.
Top of mind for NAFA members and all stakeholders in the consumer retirement marketplace is the fate of the DOL fiduciary rule. NAFA is pleased that President Trump recently signed an executive memorandum directing the DOL to review the fiduciary rule and to revise or rescind the rule. Subsequently, Acting U.S. Secretary of Labor Ed Hugler indicated that the Department is considering options to delay the rule’s April applicability date as they undertake the review. We assume a short term delay of the rule will occur very soon, while the DOL conducts a review and then takes additional steps to roll back the rule. New public comments from several Administration officials reflect deep concern about the rule so we are optimistic it will be rescinded.
NAFA is working with its contacts on the Hill and continues to advocate for swift repeal of the DOL fiduciary rule. A clean slate will allow stakeholders to craft protection standards for retirement savers that do not limit access to financial assistance and products or harm the fixed annuity industry. There are several legislative proposals that will be introduced in the near future.
In addition to the fiduciary rule, NAFA will be monitoring tax reform. The details of a package are being crafted in the House, and we expect action in late February or March. We will work the tax writing committees and industry partners to ensure that fixed annuities are not adversely impacted and to encourage inclusion of pro-retirement savings and pro-annuity language.