The Senate has voted 51-49 to approve a budget blueprint for fiscal 2018 that opens the door to adoption of tax cuts proposed by President Donald Trump without Democratic votes. The measure needs reconciliation with a version passed by the House before it can be submitted for Trump's signature.
Both supporters and critics of the Department of Labor's fiduciary rule oppose state efforts to pass similar laws. They say such laws will not be consistent and will add to regulatory burdens, and that state laws could create additional loopholes that could harm consumers.
On Thursday, the Internal Revenue Service released the inflation-adjusted amounts that apply to pension and 401(k) plans for 2018. While some limits remained the same as 2017, many were raised to reflect cost-of-living increases.
More advisors are shifting toward digital channels to connect with clients, using technology such as mobile apps that allow advisors to link accounts and show clients their full financial picture, writes Stuart DePina, president of Envestnet. Customer relationship management systems can also keep advisor-client communication secure, ensuring Securities and Exchange Commission guidelines are met.
"Money silence," which contributes to a lack of financial literacy, could drive the next generation to fire their financial advisors or to never hire them in the first place, says KBK Wealth Connection founder Kathleen Burns Kingsbury. Improving communication with clients and developing a relationship with them can help attract younger demographics to financial services, she says.
The unbundling of research from other services is forcing money managers to assess the value of market analysis. Investors are expected to become more picky about research offerings when they come with a bill.
The majority of mutual fund asset allocation in defined-contribution plans -- excluding money market and target-date funds -- is in actively managed funds, with 56% of such funds' assets invested in US equity, according to data from Strategic Insight Simfund. Retirement plan participants invested $10.3 billion in actively managed funds during this year's second quarter.
Financial advisors should take advantage of data-visualization techniques to better serve clients saving for retirement, says Christopher Matzke of ICMA-RC. The tools can give advisors a look at clients' potentially ineffective investment strategies, allowing them to alert clients and educate them on how to improve their investment.
Assisted living could be part of a client's retirement plan, and advisors should be prepared to help them. The median cost of assisted living in the U.S. is $45,000 per year, but Alaska and Delaware are listed as the two most-expensive states for assisted-living care, with an annual median cost of $72,000 and $72,180, respectively.
Cloud computing and the infrastructure-as-a-service model are becoming commonplace in finance and are altering the role of chief information officers. CIOs increasingly must manage digital ecosystems instead of simply heading up IT strategy and deployment.
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