The Department of Labor should switch to negotiated rulemaking to produce a new fiduciary standard, U.S. Chamber of Congress officials said Monday.
“The rule right now is obviously unworkable,” said Alice Joe, managing director of the organization’s Center for Capital Markets Competitiveness, during a press conference call.
The Chamber of Commerce filed a 53-page comment letter to the DOL on July 17, and will file two more Monday, plus a fourth letter with other trade associations. Monday’s comment letters focus on the DOL’s economic impact analysis of the proposed conflict-of-interest rule and whether alternatives were adequately considered. Ronald Bird, chamber senior economist and regulatory analyst, said the DOL officials “really need to do a lot more work” on the estimated benefits of their proposal.
Chamber officials warned during the press call that the “unduly complicated” proposal will discourage retirement investment advice, particularly to employers and employees of smaller businesses. “We feel this does more harm to retirement savings than it does good,” said Aliya Wong, the chamber’s executive director of retirement policy.
“There is a right way and a wrong way to do this, and unfortunately DOL has taken the wrong way,” said Ms. Joe. “We’re going to use every tool we can” to change that.
The formal comment period ends Tuesdayand public hearings are scheduled for the week of Aug. 10. Labor Secretary Thomas Perez and others will discuss the rulemaking at a Tuesday hearing of the Senate Health Education Labor and Pensions Subcommittee on employment and workplace safety.